Geologic units in Craig county, Virginia

Additional scientific data in this geographic area

Millboro Shale and Needmore Formation (Devonian) at surface, covers 23 % of this area

Millboro Shale (Cooper, 1939; Butts, 1940). Shale, black, fissile, pyritic, with septarian concretions locally, gradational with underlying Needmore Shale; present southwest of Shenandoah County except in southwesternmost Virginia; thickness is as much as 1000 feet in north-central western Virginia. Laterally equivalent to the Marcellus Shale and Mahantango Formation to the north east and the lower part of the Chattanooga Shale to the southwest. It is gradational with the underlying Needmore Formation. Needmore Formation. Refer to description under Dmrn.

Brallier Formation (Devonian) at surface, covers 23 % of this area

Brallier Formation (Butts, 1918). Shale, sandstone, and siltstone. Shale, partly silty, micaceous, greenish-gray, gray ish-brown and medium- to dark-gray, black, weathers light-olive-gray with light-yellow, brown and purple tints; black shale in thin beds and laminae, sparsely fossiliferous. Sandstone, micaceous, medium-light-gray, very-fine- to fine-grained, thin- to thick-bedded, and light-brown siltstone interbedded with shale. Locally siltstone is in very-thin, nodular, ferruginous lenses (Bartlett, 1974). Lower contact transitional; base at lowest siltstone bed above relatively nonsilty dark-gray shale. Equivalent to part of the Chattanooga Shale. Formation thins southwestward; it ranges from 940 feet in thickness in southwestern Washington County (Bartlett and Webb, 1971) to more than 2200 feet in Augusta County (Rader, 1967).

Keefer, Rose Hill, and Tuscarora Formations (Silurian) at surface, covers 12 % of this area

Keefer Sandstone (Ulrich, 1911). Sandstone, light-gray, fine-grained, cross-laminated, medium-bedded, very resistant. Thins northward and southwestward from a maximum of over 300 feet in Craig and western Botetourt counties. To the north it appears to interfinger with the Wills Creek and McKenzie Formations. The Keefer is equivalent to the upper portion of the Massanutten Sandstone. (The Keefer Sandstone, as used in this report, includes all of the quartzarenites with minor Skolithus-bearing red sand stone and minor calcite cemented quartzarenite in the interval above the Rose Hill Formation and below the Tonoloway Limestone in Botetourt, Rockbridge, and Augusta counties between Eagle Rock and Augusta Springs (Lampiris, 1976). Rose Hill Formation (Swartz, 1923). Sandstone, dark grayish-red, fine- to coarse-grained, poorly-sorted, argillaceous; hematite cemented, quartz sandstone interbedded with red or yellowish-green clay shale and greenish-gray, fine-grained sandstone. It is largely siltstone and shale with minor sandstone and thin limonitic iron ore beds in Southwest Virginia. Conformable with the underlying Tuscarora Formation, the Rose Hill Formation ranges up to 500 feet in thickness in northern and western Virginia but pinches-out in southwest ern Botetourt and Roanoke counties where the Keefer and Tuscarora For ma tions merge. It is present with other Silurian rocks everywhere except in the Massanutten Mountains or where an unconformity exists in exposures east of Walker Mountain. Tuscarora Formation (Darton and Taff, 1896). Quartzite, quartzarenite, and minor shale. Quartzite, light-gray with few nearly white, porcelaneous beds, fine- to medium-grained, with quartz-pebble conglomerate locally near base, quartz cemented, thick-bedded, and cross-bedded, resistant, cliff- and ledge-former, generally not more than 75 feet thick, comprises entire unit in many areas or is upper member where unconformably overlying a lower quartzarenite and shale member. Quartzarenite, light-yellowish-brown or medium-gray, fine-grained, thin-bedded, ranges in thickness from 0 to 175feet. Shale, light- to medium-brownish-gray, arenaceous, thin interbeds in quartzarenite. Conformably overlies the Juniata Formation in central western Virginia. Where lower member is absent the upper member unconformably overlies the Juniata, Oswego, Martinsburg, or Reedsville Formations or may be conformable with the Juniata Formation in northern Virginia. In southwestern Virginia grayish-red, fine-grained, ferruginous sandstone with lenses of coarse-grained, quartz sandstone and quartz-pebble conglomerate are included in the upper part of the formation. The Tuscarora is equivalent to the Clinch Formation and to the lower part of the Massanutten Sandstone.

Lower Devonian and Silurian Formations Undivided (Silurian-Devonian) at surface, covers 11 % of this area

Some landslides with intact stratigraphic units in Craig County area. Includes: Dsu, Skrt, Sm. (Shrc?)

Ridgeley Sandstone, Helderberg and Cayugan Groups (Silurian-Devonian) at surface, covers 9 % of this area

Ridgeley Sandstone and Helderberg and Cayuga Groups. Ridgeley Sand stone (Swartz, 1913). Sandstone, gray, fine-to coarse-grained, locally conglomeratic, weathers yellowish- to dark-yellowish-brown, friable, calcareous, and fossiliferous. Thickness ranges up to 150 feet but is highly variable locally; occurs in western Virginia north of Craig County. Same as the Oriskany Sandstone of Butts (1933), and is continuous with the Rocky Gap Sandstone to the southwest. It grades downward into the Licking Creek Limestone and has been extensively mined for iron ore (Lesure, 1957). Helderberg Group: Licking Creek Limestone (Swartz, 1929). Upper member is light-gray, coarse-grained, arenaceous limestone; lower member is medium-to dark-gray, fine-grained, chert bearing limestone. Thickness ranges from 0 to150 feet and is present northeastward from Craig County; same as the Becraft (upper member) and New Scotland (lower member) of Butts (1940). It conformably over lies the Heal ng Springs Sandstone where the sandstone is present. It was extensively mined for iron with the Ridgeley Sandstone. Healing Springs Sandstone (Swartz, 1929). Sandstone, light-gray, medium- to coarse-grained, cross-laminated, and calcareous with local lenses of chert. Present in Alleghany, Bath, and Augusta Counties where it is generally less than 20 feet thick and conformably overlies the New Creek Lime stone. It appears to be a northeast extending tongue of Rocky Gap Sandstone. New Creek Limestone (Bowen, 1967; Coeymans Limestone of earlier reports). Limestone, light- to-medium gray with pink calcite crystals, very-coarse-grained, crinoidal, with lenses of quartz sandstone locally in the lower part. Occurs as local reefoidal buildups northeast of Alleghany County. Keyser Formation (Swartz, 1913). Limestone, sandstone, and shale. Limestone (upper), medium- to dark-gray, fine- to medium-grained, nodular, scattered, small chert nodules, biohermal, fossiliferous. Limestone (lower), medium- to dark-gray, fine- to coarse-grained, medium- to thick-bedded, very nodular, shaly, with thin (1- to 3-inch thick) crinoidal layers. Sandstone, medium-light-gray, medium-grained, calcareous, cross-bedded. Shale, medium-gray, calcareous. Upper and lower boundaries are conformable north of Clifton Forge. Thickness ranges from 250 feet in Highland County to 50 feet in Augusta County. In Highland and Bath counties the upper and lower limestones are separated by a calcareous shale unit (Big Mountain Shale Member). To the south and southeast the shale is replaced by sandstone (Clifton Forge Sandstone Member). From Craig County southwestward, the Keyser becomes all sandstone and is equivalent to the lower portion of the Rocky Gap Sandstone. Southwest of Newcastle the lower contact is disconformable. For mapping purposes the Keyser is considered to be part of the Helderberg Group. Cayuga Group: Tonoloway Limestone (Ulrich, 1911). Limestone, very-dark-gray, fine-grained, thin-bedded to laminated, with some arenaceous beds; celestite locally occurs in vugs and as veins. Thickness ranges from a few feet in southwestern Virginia to more than 500 feet in Highland County. It is conformable with the underlying Wills Creek Formation and equivalent to the Hancock Formation of Southwest Virginia. Wills Creek Formation (Uhler, 1905). Limestone, medium-to dark-gray, fine-grained, arenaceous, thin-bedded, with calcareous shale and mudstone, and thin, quartzose sandstone beds. Occurs only in western Virginia where the thickness ranges from 0 to more than 400 feet. It conformably over lies the Bloomsburg Formation and is laterally equivalent to the upper part of the Keefer Sandstone to the east and southwest of Craig County where the typical Wills Creek lithology is absent. Bloomsburg Formation (White, 1893): Sandstone, reddish-gray, fine-grained, thick-bedded with red mudstone interbeds. Thickness ranges from 35 to 400 feet between Frederick County and the northern Massanutten Mountains respectively. It grades into the Wills Creek Formation to the southwest, and is probably equivalent, in part, to the Keefer Sandstone southwest of Craig and Botetourt counties. McKenzie Formation (Stose and Swartz, 1912): Shale, medium-gray, yellowish weathering and interbedded sandstone, medium-gray, medium-grained, friable, thin-bedded and calcareous. Thickens northeastward from a few feet in Bath County to about 200 feet in Frederick County. It is probably equivalent in part to the Keefer Sandstone to the southwest and southeast and appears to be conformable with the Keefer Sandstone in northwestern Virginia.

Knox Group (Cambrian-Ordovician) at surface, covers 8 % of this area

Knox Group (Safford, 1869). Dolostone, limestone, and sandstone. Dolostone, light- to medium-gray, very-fine- to fine-grained, locally with pink streaks in the upper part; and very-light-gray to dark-gray and brownish-gray, medium- to coarse-grained, locally argillaceous dolostone near the base of the unit; greenish-gray shale partings locally present; chert is abundant in some parts of the unit. Limestone, blue gray to dark-blue-gray, very-fine- to coarse-grained, locally sandy. Sandstone, gray to brown, fine- to medium-grained. Limestone is dominant in the eastern thrust belts. The Knox Group ranges from 2000 feet in Southwest Virginia to 3560 feet in thickness to the east in Washington County (Bartlett and Webb, 1971). The Knox includes the Mascot, Kingsport, Chepultepec, and Copper Ridge Dolomites and the Maynardville Formation.

Juniata, Reedsville, Trenton, and Eggleston Formations (Ordovician) at surface, covers 7 % of this area

Juniata Formation (Darton and Taff, 1896). Siltstone, shale, sandstone, and limestone. Siltstone, shale, and sandstone, locally calcareous, grayish-red, locally fossiliferous; with some interbeds of greenish-gray shale, quartzarenite, and argillaceous limestone. Cycles consisting of a basal, crossbedded quartzarenite with a channeled lower contact; a middle unit of interbedded mudstone and burrowed sandstone; and an upper bioturbated mudstone are commonly present north of New River (Diecchio, 1985). The Juniata Formation ranges from less than 200 to more than 800 feet in thickness. In southwestern Virginia the red, unfossiliferous, and argillaceous Juniata Formation is present in the southeastern belts. It is equivalent to the gray, fossiliferous, and limy Sequatchie Formation of western belts (Thompson, 1970; Dennison and Boucot, 1974). Even though the beds along Clinch Mountain, in Scott County, contain minor amounts of carbonate rock (Harris and Miller, 1958) the majority is grayish- red siltstone, which is typical of the Juniata Formation. Reedsville Shale. Refer to description under Ou. Trenton Limestone. Refer to description under Ou. Eggleston Formation. Refer to description under Ou.

Moccasin or Bays Formation through Blackford Formation (Ordovician) at surface, covers 4 % of this area

Moccasin Formation, Bays Formation, Unit C, Unit B, and Unit A. Moccasin Formation (Campbell, 1894). Mudstone, shale, imestone, and sandstone. Mudstone and shale, dusky-red to dark-reddish-brown, calcareous, ripple-marks, and mud cracks common. Limestone, light-olive-gray, weathers very-light gray, aphanic with "birds-eyes", locally fossiliferous. The limestone generally is the middle member of the Moccasin southwest of Giles County. In eastern Giles County and northeastward a thin medium-grained, gray sandstone occurs near the base of the Moccasin. The thickness ranges from 0 in northern Alleghany County to about 600 feet in Scott County. Bays Formation (Keith, 1895). Siltstone, sandstone, mudstone, and limestone. Siltstone, grayish-red, olive- to light-olive-gray, locally calcareous, sandy in part. Sandstone, light-gray to yellowish-gray, fine- to very-coarse-grained, locally conglomeratic, calcareous. Mudstone, grayish-red, olive- to light-olive-gray, mudcracks common. Limestone, grayish-red to light-olive-gray, aphanic. Five distinct K-bentonites reported by Hergenroder (1966). Contacts are conformable except perhaps in Botetourt, Roanoke, and Montgomery counties. Thickness ranges from 105 feet north of Wytheville to 890 feet near Daleville in Botetourt County. From Scott and Washington counties to Highland County and northwest of the Pulaski and North Mountain faults, a multitude of stratigraphic names have been applied to the rocks between the Bays or Moccasin (above) and the Beekmantown or Knox (below). The lack of detailed geologic mapping, except in Scott and Giles counties, the restricted area of the two major stratigraphic studies (Cooper and Prouty, 1943; Kay, 1956), and the general disagreement as to mappability and correlation of units makes it impossible to apply specific stratigraphic nomenclature at this time. Therefore, the rocks are described as three packages of lithologies (from youngest to oldest): Unit C, Unit B, and Unit A. Unit C. Limestone, medium- to dark-gray, aphanic to fine-grained with thin, medium- to coarse-grained beds, argillaceous, nodular to planar-bedded, locally very fossiliferous. The following names have been applied to Unit C: Witten, Bowen, Wardell, Gratton, Benbolt, Chatham Hill, Wassum, Rich Valley, Athens, Ottesee, Liberty Hall, Fetzer, and Giesler. Unit B. Limestone, light- to dark-gray, aphanic to coarsegrained, black and gray chert nodules, carbonate mound buildups. This unit is characterized by grainstone with interbedded micrite and chert. The overlying Unit C is very argillaceous and lacks chert. The following names have been applied to Unit B: Wardell, Gratton, Benbolt, Lincolnshire, Big Valley, McGlone, McGraw, Five Oaks, Peery, Ward Cove, Rockdell, Rye Cove, Effna, Whitesburg, Holston, Pearisburg, and Tumbez. Unit A. Dolostone, light- to medium-gray, fine-grained, locally conglomeratic, cherty. Limestone, medium- to dark gray, fine-grained, locally cherty. Shale, light-gray to dusky red. A basal chert-dolomite conglomerate with clasts as much as cobble size is locally present on the unconformity surface. The following names have been applied to Unit A: Blackford, Elway, Tumbez, Lurich (lower part), and "basal clastics".

Chemung Formation (redefined as Foreknobs Formation) (Devonian) at surface, covers 2 % of this area

Chemung Formation (Hall, 1839). Redefined as the Foreknobs Formation (Dennison, 1970). Sandstone and shale, dark-gray and greenish-gray, fine-grained, thin- to thick-bedded, lithic sandstone and interbedded greenish gray, fissile, clay shale. Minor quartz-pebble conglomerate, thin red sandstone, and locally, fossil shell beds. Very thin or absent in southwestern Virginia; thickens to about 2500 feet northeastward in Frederick County. Gradational contact with underlying Brallier Formation and equivalent to part of the Chattanooga Shale to the southwest. Redefined and described as part of the Greenland Gap Group by Dennison (1970).

Nolichucky and Honaker Formations (Cambrian) at surface, covers 0.5 % of this area

Nolichucky Formation. Refer to description under [nmrr]. Honaker Formation (Campbell, 1897). Dolostone, limestone, and shale. Dolostone, light- to dark-gray to dark-bluish-gray, aphanic to coarse-grained, thin- to massive-bedded, "butcher-block" weathering; with sparse interbeds of argillaceous limestone, and minor dark-gray chert. Limestone, argillaceous, ribbon-banded in part, light- to medium-gray, very-fine-grained, thick-bedded. Shale, greenish-gray, laminated to thin-bedded. The Honaker Formation is predominantly dolostone with subordinate limestone. The dolostone becomes more dominant in the northeastern part of outcrop belt (Evans and Troensegaard, 1991). Shale is locally present as a 20- to 60-feet-thick unit in the middle of the formation and as thin interbeds with the dolostone and limestone throughout the area. The Honaker Formation ranges from about 1000 to 1100 feet in thickness. It is laterally equivalent to the lower Elbrook to the east.

McKenzie Formation, Clinton Group and Tuscarora Sandstone, undivided (Silurian) at surface, covers 0.2 % of this area

McKenzie Formation and Clinton Group: includes the McKenzie Formation, consisting of shale with thin limestone lenses; the dark Rochester Shale; the white Keefer Sandstone; and the Rose Hill predominantly red shale, with thin sandstone interbeds, some of which are called "iron sandstones" from their reddish-brown color and hematite content. Tuscarora Sandstone: medium- to thick-bedded, white to gray or pinkish sandstone, fine to coarse, quartzitic, ridge-forming. Equivalent to the Clinch Sandstone of Tennessee.

Tuscarora Sandstone (Silurian) at surface, covers 0.1 % of this area

Medium- to thick-bedded, white to gray or pinkish sandstone, fine to coarse, quartzitic, ridge-forming. Equivalent to the Clinch Sandstone of Tennessee.

Juniata and Oswego Formations (Ordovician) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

The Juniata is a thin-bedded, blocky, red sandstone and shale. In places it is underlain by the thick-bedded, gray Oswego Sandstone.

Harrell Shale (Devonian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

(part of Millboro Shale) - dark gray to black thinly laminated to fissile shale. Calcareous shale and limestone lenses near the base (Tully).

Lower Ordovician and Upper Cambrian Formations Undivided (Cambrian-Ordovician) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Includes Pinesburg Station Dolomite, Rockdale Run Formation, Beekmantown Formation, Stonehenge Limestone, and Conococheague Formation. Refer to descriptions under Ob and O[co/[co.

Price Formation (Mississippian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Price Formation (Campbell, 1894). Sandstone, quartzarenite, conglomerate, siltstone, shale, limestone, and coal. Sandstone, feldspathic, slightly micaceous, light-gray to medium-gray, weathers olive-gray to greenish-gray, few grayish-red beds, very-fine- to medium-grained, thin- to thick-bedded, cross-laminated in upper part of formation, locally conglomeratic with quartz pebbles and granules. The lowest part of the Price contains quartz pebble conglomerate and quartzarenite, with marine fossils in basal beds. Formation becomes finer grained to the southwest. Sandstone is dominant in the upper half of formation. Siltstone and silty shale, partly calcareous, locally pyritic and glauconitic, greenish-gray, medium-dark-gray to light-olive-gray, locally black and carbonaceous, laminated to medium-bedded, hard, hackly, fissile to platy, fossiliferous; interbedded with sandstone. Limestone, rare, argillaceous, arenaceous, very- thin beds, as much as six inches thick, in interbedded siltstones and shales (Bartlett, 1974, p. 83-84). Coal in upper part of formation (Bartholomew and Brown, 1992; Bartlett, 1974; Cooper, 1944). The Price is a westward thinning clastic wedge (Bartlett, 1974, p. 170) that is equivalent to part of the Grainger Formation in the southwesternmost part of Virginia. It overlies the Chemung Formation from southwestern Washington County to the north east and the Brallier Formation or the Chattanooga Shale to the southwest. Base is conformable, placed at the base of a conglomerate northeast of Lee County (Bartlett, 1974). Thickness is variable; it is 250 feet thick in Lee County, 185 feet thick (Henika, 1988) in Scott County and as much as 1800 feet thick (Campbell and others, 1925) in Montgomery County.

Oriskany Sandstone and Huntersville Chert (Devonian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Oriskany Sandstone: sometimes designated Ridgeley in eastern West Virginia. White to brown coarse- to fine-grained, partly calcareous sandstone, locally pebbly or conglomeratic, and ridge-forming. May be white, nearly pure silica, and a source of glass sand, as at Berkeley Springs, Morgan County. Huntersville Chert (part of Onesquethaw ("Onondaga") Group): ranges from a nearly pure slightly calcitic or dolomitic chert to an inter-tonguing of such chert and the Needmore Shale. Grades westward in the subsurface to a limestone, commonly considered as "Onondaga". Contains the "glauconitic" Bobs Ridge Sandstone Member. Not mappable at scale of this map. Included with Do.

St. Paul Group (Ordovician) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

Includes the New Market and Row Park Limestones. Predominantly medium-gray aphanitic limestone, containing very low-silica, cream-colored member of considerable economic importance. Chert nodules and dolomite occur in the Row Park.

Mahantango Formation (Devonian) at surface, covers < 0.1 % of this area

(part of Millboro Shale) - thickly laminated marine shale, siltstone, very fine sandstone, and some limestone, with an occasional coral reef or biostrome. Contains the Clearville and Chaneysville Siltstone Members of Pennsylvania.