Geologic units in Hopewell City, Virginia

Windsor Formation (Tertiary-Quaternary) at surface, covers 41 % of this area

Windsor Formation (lower Pleistocene or upper Pliocene, Coch, 1968). Gray and yellowish- to reddish-brown sand, gravel, silt, and clay. Constitutes surficial deposits of extensive plain (altitude 85-95 feet.) seaward of Surry scarp and of coeval, fluvial-estuarine terraces west of scarp. Fining upward sequence beneath plain consists of a basal pebbly sand grading upward into cross-bedded, quartzose sand and massive, clayey silt and silty clay; lower and upper parts of sequence were deposited, respectively, in shallow-marine or open-bay and restricted-bay or lagoonal environments. In terraces west of Surry scarp, fluvial-estuarine deposits comprise muddy, coarse, trough cross-bedded sand and gravel grading upward to sandy silt and clay. Thickness is 0 to 40 feet.

Chuckatuck Formation (Quaternary) at surface, covers 33 % of this area

Chuckatuck Formation (middle(?) Pleistocene, Johnson and Berquist, 1989). Light- to medium-gray, yellowish-orange, and red dish-brown sand, silt, and clay and minor amounts of dark-brown and brownish-black peat. Comprises surficial deposits of mid-level coast-parallel plains (altitude 50-60 feet) and equivalent riverine terraces. Eastward, unit is truncated by the Suffolk scarp; westward, along major stream drainages, unit is separated from the younger topographically lower Shirley Formation by the Kingsmill scarp and equivalent estuarine scarps. Fluvial-estuarine facies includes, from bottom to top, (1) channel-fill deposits of poorly sorted, cross-bedded, pebbly and cobbly sand interbedded, locally, with peat and sandy silt rich in organic matter, (2) moderately well-sorted, cross-bedded to planar bedded, fine- to medium-grained sand grading up ward into (3) clayey silt and sandy and silty clay. Bay facies of coastwise plain includes a basal gravelly sand filling shallow paleochannels, a thin but extensive pebbly sand containing heavy mineral laminae and Ophiomorpha burrows, and an upper, relatively thick, medium- to fine-grained silty sand and sandy silt. Thickness is 0 to 26 feet.

Potomac Formation (Cretaceous) at surface, covers 15 % of this area

Potomac Formation (Lower and Upper(?) Cretaceous, McGee, 1886). Light-gray to pinkish- and greenish-gray quartzo-feldspathic sand, fine- to coarse-grained, pebbly, poorly sorted, commonly thick-bedded and trough cross-bedded. Sand is interbedded with gray to green, massive to thick-bedded sandy clay and silt, commonly mottled red or reddish-brown. Includes lesser amounts of clay-clast conglomerate and thin-bedded to laminated, carbonaceous clay and silt. In the inner Coastal Plain, unit was deposited mainly in fluvial-deltaic environments, intertongues eastward with thin glauconitic sands of shallow-shelf origin. Spore and pollen assemblages and leaf impressions of ferns and cycads indicate an Early Cretaceous age (Doyle and Robbins, 1977). In some downdip areas, uppermost part of unit may be of earliest Late Cretaceous age. Thickness ranges from a feather-edge at western limit of outcrop to more than 3500 feet in subsurface of outermost Coastal Plain.

Lower Tertiary Deposits (Tertiary) at surface, covers 10 % of this area

May include the following formation - Brightseat, Aquia, Marlboro, Nanjemoy, and Piney Point (Pamunkey Group), and Old Church. Lower Tertiary deposits (Oligocene, Eocene, and Paleocene). Mostly fine- to coarse-grained glauconitic quartz sand and clay-silt, shelly in part; includes lesser amounts of sandy limestone and limey sand. In outcrop, unit comprises the Pamunkey Group (Brightseat, Aquia, Marlboro, Nanjemoy, and Piney Point Formations) and the Old Church Formation. In subsurface, unit includes Eocene and Oligocene strata not included in the Pamunkey and Old Church. Ages of formational units based on foraminiferal, nannofossil, dinocyst, pollen, and molluscan studies (Frederiksen, 1979; Gibson and others, 1980; Gibson and Bybell, 1984; Edwards, 1984, 1989; Edwards and others, 1984; Poag, 1989; Ward, 1985; Ward and Krafft, 1984). Stratigraphic sections vary widely, comprising one or more of the following formations: Old Church Formation (Ward, 1985) and unnamed glauconitic sands (upper Oligocene). In inner and middle Coastal Plain, unit is 0 to 5 feet of olive-gray, fine- to coarse-grained, shelly, very sparsely glauconitic quartz sand of the Old Church Formation; typical fossils include Anomia ruffini, Lucina sp., and Mercenaria capax. In subsurface of outer Coastal Plain, unit includes about 45 feet of dark-olive-gray to greenish black glauconite sand with lesser amounts of quartz; sand has olive-brown clay-silt matrix. Lower Oligocene beds. Olive-gray to grayish-olive sand, very-fine-grained, clayey and silty, micaceous, glauconitic; coarsens upward to a very-fine- to fine-grained sand. Unit is 0 to 50 feet thick; identified only in subsurface of Eastern Shore area (Exmore, core hole, R. B. Mixon and D. S. Powars, personal communication). Chickahominy Formation (upper Eocene, Cushman and Cederstrom, 1945). Predominantly olive-gray clayey silt and silty clay, very compact, glauconitic, micaceous, contains abundant finely crystalline iron sulfide. Coarsens downward to a very-fine- to fine-grained sand, pebbles at base. Rare fragmental shell, microfossils very abundant. Thickness is 0 to 100 feet; present in subsurface of southeastern Virginia. Piney Point Formation (middle Eocene, Otton, 1955). Olive-gray and grayish-olive-green, glauconitic quartz sand, medium-to coarse-grained, poorly sorted, contains scattered quartz pebbles, interbedded with carbonate-cemented sand and moldic limestone. Unit is characterized by large, calcitic shells of the oyster Cubitostrea sellaeformis, a middle Eocene marker. Aragonitic mollusks are generally leached, leaving only molds and casts. Thickness is 0 to 60 feet. Nanjemoy Formation (lower Eocene, Clark and Martin,1901). Dark-olive-gray, greenish-gray, and olive-black glauconitic quartz sand, fine- to coarse-grained, very clayey and silty, intensely burrowed, sparsely to abundantly shelly, interbedded with sandy clay-silt. Sand in upper part of unit is less clayey, very micaceous, and contains scattered quartz pebbles. Typical mollusks include Venericardia potapacoensis, Venericardia ascia, and Macrocallista subimpressa. Unit is 0 to 140 feet thick. Marlboro Clay (lower Eocene (?) and upper Paleocene, Clark and Martin, 1901). Light-gray, pinkish-gray, and reddish- brown kaolinitic clay, massively bedded to laminated, interbedded with lesser amounts of laminated and ripple cross-laminated silt and very-fine-grained sand. Contains rare molds of small mollusks and arenaceous foraminifera. Thickness is 0 to 30 feet. Aquia Formation (upper Paleocene, Clark and Martin, 1901). Light- to dark-olive gray, glauconitic quartz sand, fine- to coarse-grained, clayey and silty, thick- to massively bedded, sparsely to abundantly shelly. Lower part of unit is more poorly sorted and more calcarious than upper part and contains a few thin to medium beds of olive-gray, white, and pale greenish-yellow limestone. Upper part of unit is moderately well sorted and characterized by thin beds of the large, high-spired gastropod Turritella mortoni. Other common mollusks in clude Cucullaea gigantea, Ostrea sinuosa, and Crassatellites alaeformis. Thickness is 0 to 130 feet. Brightseat Formation (lower Paleocene, Bennett and Collins, 1952). Olive-gray to olive-black, micaceous quartz sand, fine- to very fine-grained, clayey and silty, variably glauconitic. Thickness is 0 to 20 feet.

Alluvium (Quaternary) at surface, covers 2 % of this area

Fine to coarse gravelly sand and sandy gravel, silt, and clay, light- to medium-gray and yellowish-gray. Deposited mainly in channel, point-bar, and flood-plain environments; includes sandy deposits of narrow estuarine beaches, and mud, muddy sand, and peat in swamps and in fresh- and brackish-water marshes bordering tidewater rivers. Grades into colluvium along steeper valley walls at margins of unit. Mostly Holocene but, locally, includes low-lying Pleistocene (?) terrace deposits. As much as 80 feet thick along major streams.