Bellingham Conglomerate (Pennsylvanian, Cambrian or Proterozoic Z)
Bellingham Conglomerate - Red and gray metamorphosed conglomerate, sandstone, graywacke, and shale. Bellingham Conglomerate consists of conglomerate and lithic graywacke interbedded with chlorite phyllite and is confined to Bellingham basin. Also contains some volcanic rocks (rhyolite porphyry in roadcut on MA Hwy 146 at Premisy Hill west of Woonsocket, and felsite porphyry in the Franklin area east of Bellingham). Conglomerate contains pebbles of quartzite from adjacent Blackstone Group rocks and typical blue quartz of Milford Granite, so sediments are locally derived. Exposures on east side of Woonsocket Hill, southeast of Woonsocket, RI, show cliffs of steeply dipping, thin-bedded, white to gray quartzite of Blackstone Group standing above green schistose conglomerate containing many flattened white to gray quartzite pebbles and interbedded green calcareous quartz schist. Contact is probably a fault, but source of pebbles is quite obvious. In the same area, schist of Blackstone Group is difficult to distinguish from those of the Bellingham because of low-grade metamorphism of Blackstone rocks; it is probable that some of the low-grade Blackstone Rocks mapped northwest of Woonsocket in Blackstone River valley are part of Bellingham. The two rock units have been traditionally distinguished in the past by presence or absence of epidote (Warren and Powers, 1914), but this needs further study. Age is uncertain. Rocks have customarily been correlated with those of Pennsylvanian Narragansett basin; however, rocks in some exposures, such as the one at River St and Blackstone St in Woonsocket resemble Proterozoic Z Roxbury Conglomerate in Boston basin. Skehan and others (1979) suggest that Bellingham may have a similar age to that of Roxbury. This is supported by observation that Bellingham is a structural trough extending southwest from Boston basin and separating primarily Proterozoic Z granitoids from altered, but nongneissic, Proterozoic granitoids (Wones and Goldsmith, 1991). In deference to tradition, and because Proterozoic Z age has not been proven, age is shown on MA State bedrock map of Zen and others as Proterozoic Z to Pennsylvanian [map actually has age of Proterozoic Z, Cambrian, or Pennsylvanian, which differs from age stated in this report.] (Goldsmith, 1991).
Rhode Island Formation (Upper and Middle Pennsylvanian)
Rhode Island Formation - Sandstone, graywacke, shale and conglomerate; minor beds of meta-anthracite. Fossil plants. Rhode Island Formation is thickest and most extensive formation in Narragansett basin. Does not extend to Norfolk basin. Consists of gray sandstone and siltstone and lesser amounts of gray to black shale, gray conglomerate, and coal beds 10 m thick. Interfingers with Wamsutta Formation in Narragansett basin. In places overlies Dedham Granite. Age is Middle and Late Pennsylvanian (Goldsmith, 1991).
Wamsutta Formation (Middle and Lower Pennsylvanian)
Wamsutta Formation - Red to pink, well-sorted conglomerate, graywacke, sandstone, and shale; fossil plants. Wamsutta Formation occurs in Narragansett and Norfolk basins. Consists of conglomerate, lithic graywacke, sandstone, and shale. Also contains rhyolite and basalt horizons near Attleboro. Northwest of Attleboro, Wamsutta overlies Diamond Hill Felsite as used by Skehan and Murray (in Skehan and others, 1979). Volcanic rocks similar to Diamond Hill Felsite crop out west of Lake Pearl, between Franklin and Wrentham, on west flank of Norfolk basin. These are shown within Wamsutta Formation on MA State bedrock map of Zen and others (1983) because of their proximity to Diamond Hill. They also resemble Proterozoic Z Mattapan Volcanic Complex. Chute (1966) described lenses of carbonate rock in red and green shale in Wamsutta in Norwood quad. Limestone also observed in rocks mapped as Wamsutta adjacent to exposed Dedham Granite at Manchester Pond Reservoir (J.P. Schafer, 1982, oral commun.). Red and green shales may actually be Cambrian. Upper member of Pondville Conglomerate grades into and interfingers with Wamsutta; in turn, Wamsutta interfingers with Rhode Island Formation in northwest part of Narragansett basin. Nonconformably overlies Dedham Granite. Partly equivalent to Rhode Island Formation. Age is Early and Middle Pennsylvanian. Contains a few plant fossils (Goldsmith, 1991).