Ayer Granite

Granite to tonalite, partly porphyritic; locally gneissic, locally muscovitic; may include rocks older than Silurian; intrudes Sb and So. Ayer Granite is divided into the Clinton facies and the Devens-Long Pond facies (Gore, 1976). In addition, there are some masses not assigned to either facies that intrude Berwick Formation west and northwest of Lawrence, and that intrude Paxton and Oakdale Formations south of Worcester and west of probable southern continuation of Wekepeke fault. Radiometric ages obtained for facies of Ayer pose problems in assigning ages to unfossiliferous sedimentary rocks they intrude. Clinton facies has a well-defined U-Pb zircon age of 433 +/-5 Ma (Zartman and Naylor, 1984) that authors cite as Early Silurian; Devens-Long Pond facies has a similar age. This age greatly compresses the time available for deposition, burial, deformation, and metamorphism of Berwick and Paxton if these units are truly Silurian. Some of the Ayer not assigned to a facies may have been more properly correlated with Early Devonian Chelmsford Granite and muscovite-biotite granite at Millstone Hill. Bodies south of Worcester may be more properly correlated with Canterbury Gneiss of CT, which lies on strike with Ayer and has Early Devonian age of 329 +/-9 Ma (Zartman and Naylor, 1984). Zartman and Naylor (1984) believe Ayer Granite has same age range as Newburyport Complex. It is quite possible, based on textural and mineralogical differences that the two facies should be separate units, representing different magmatic events (Wones and Goldsmith, 1991).
State Massachusetts
Name Ayer Granite
Geologic age Lower Silurian
Lithologic constituents
Igneous > Plutonic > Granitic > Granitegranite to tonalite (Lower Silurian), partly porphyritic; locally gneissic, locally muscovitic
Igneous > Plutonic > Granitic > Tonalitegranite to tonalite (Lower Silurian), partly porphyritic; locally gneissic, locally muscovitic
Comments Part of Merrimack Belt (Silurian, Devonian and Pennsylvanian Rocks). Secondary unit description per MA007.
NGMDB product
Counties Middlesex - Worcester