Date of Award

Fall 1989

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Ocean & Earth Sciences



Committee Director

Stephen J. Culver

Committee Member

Gerald H. Johnson

Committee Member

Lauck W. Ward

Committee Member

Dennis A. Darby

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.G4L39


The Yorktown Formation beds which crop out along the James River in southeastern Virginia near Kingsmill and Carter's Grove are lithologically described in order to compare them with the "typical" Yorktown beds upriver in the area of Fort Boykins, Rushmere, and Cobham Wharf. Thirty-four stratigraphic sections are constructed of the bluffs along the river. The Yorktown beds in the area of Kingsmill and Cobham Wharf are divided into ten lithofacies: the silty sand facies (B), the Chesapecten facies (C), the Glycymeris facies (D), the Chama facies (E), the glauconitic biofragmental sand facies (F), the laminated silty clay facies (G), the biofragmental silty sand facies (H), the sandy silt facies (I), the calcareous silty sand facies (J), and the clayey fine sand facies (X).

The Yorktown lithofacies in the area of Kingsmill and Carter's Grove may have been deposited on a shoal retreat massif, i.e. a shelf topographic high. The Yorktown lithofacies were deposited in a shallow shelf environment including offshore calcareous banks and back barrier lagoonal regions. The facies were deposited in the early and late Pliocene during two transgressive cycles. The shelf deposits show evidence of being reworked by infaunal taxa as well as storms and currents.


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