Type designation:

Type locality: The Kinkaid Limestone was named by Stuart Weller (1920, p. 218) for exposures of gray and yellow-gray cherty limestone, varicolored shale, and a few thin beds of sandstone along Kinkaid Creek, Jackson County, Illinois (Gray, 1970; Gray and Keller, 1986). Total thickness of this unit is as much as 140 ft (43 m) (Weller, 1920, p. 406-407; Gray, 1970; Gray and Keller, 1986).

History of usage:

Redescription: Swann (1963, p. 42-44, 72) and Atherton and others (1975, p. 162), redescribed the Kinkaid in Illinois as consisting of upper and lower limestone members and a middle shale and limestone member that have an aggregate thickness of 120 to 170 ft (37 to 52 m) (Gray and Keller, 1986).

Extension: In southern Indiana, outcropping limestone equivalent to the lower part of the Kinkaid Limestone of Illinois was originally named the Negli Creek Limestone by Malott (1925) (Gray and Keller, 1986). This unit was correlated with the Kinkaid by Malott in 1931 (p. 222).

Restriction: In Indiana the name "Kinkaid Limestone" is now restricted to subsurface usage (Gray and Keller, 1986).


Where the Kinkaid Limestone is not greatly reduced by pre-Pennsylvanian erosion, it is 130 to 150 ft (40 to 46 m) thick and is divisible into three members (Gray and Keller, 1986). The uppermost member, the Goreville Limestone Member, is 20 to 25 ft (6 to 7.6 m) thick and consists of medium- to light-gray and brownish-gray limestones that are variably fossiliferous and are sparingly dolomitic or cherty (Droste and Keller, 1995, p. 14). The middle member, the Cave Hill Shale Member, is 80 to 100 ft (24 to 30 m) thick and is predominantly dark gray shale with thin beds of limestone and sandstone (Droste and Keller, 1995, p. 14). The lower member, the Negli Creek Limestone Member, is 18 to 22 ft (5.5 to 6.7 m) thick and is tan-gray to brown medium to very fine limestone (Droste and Keller, 1995, p. 12).

For Indiana usage, the Kinkaid Limestone was assigned to the Buffalo Wallow Group by Gray and Keller (1986).

Distribution: The Kincaid Limestone is recognized in most of Posey County, adjacent western Gibson County, and in parts of Perry, Spencer, and Warrick Counties (Gray and Keller, 1986; Droste and Keller, 1995).


The Kinkaid Limestone overlies the Degonia Sandstone with presumed conformity and is overlain disconformably by the Mansfield Formation (Morrowan) except in a few places in Posey County where the Grove Church Shale (Chesterian Series) intervenes (Gray and Keller, 1986).


The Kinkaid Limestone or some part of it is recognized throughout much of the Illinois Basin. In southern Illinois it is assigned to the zone of the crinoid Pterotocrinus tridecibrachialis Gutschick, the most widely distributed Pterotocrinus species in eastern North America (Horowitz and Strimple, 1974; Gray and Keller, 1986). The Kinkaid apparently correlates with rocks assigned to North American foraminiferal Zone 18 of Mamet and Skipp (1971) and to the Namurian Series (Zone E2) of European usage (Gray and Keller, 1986). On the basis of its conodont fauna, the outcropping Kinkaid of southern Illinois has been assigned to the Kladognathus-Cavusgnathus naviculus Assemblage Zone in the standard North American zonation (Collinson, Rexroad, and Thompson, 1971; Gray and Keller, 1986).

Regional Indiana usage:

Illinois Basin (COSUNA 11)
Supergroup: none
Group: Buffalo Wallow Group
Formation: Kinkaid Limestone

Misc/Abandoned Names:


Geologic Map Unit Designation:


Note: Hansen (1991, p. 52) in Suggestions to authors of the reports of the United States Geological Survey noted that letter symbols for map units are considered to be unique to each geologic map and that adjacent maps do not necessarily need to use the same symbols for the same map unit. Therefore, map unit abbreviations in the Indiana Geologic Names Information System should be regarded simply as recommendations.

COSUNA areas and regional terminology

Names for geologic units vary across Indiana. The Midwestern Basin and Arches Region COSUNA chart (Shaver, 1984) was developed to strategically document such variations in terminology. The geologic map (below left) is derived from this chart and provides an index to the five defined COSUNA regions in Indiana. The regions are generally based on regional bedrock outcrop patterns and major structural features in Indiana. (Click the maps below to view more detailed maps of COSUNA regions and major structural features in Indiana.)

COSUNA areas and numbers that approximate regional bedrock outcrop patterns and major structural featuers in Indiana.

Major tectonic features that affect bedrock geology in Indiana.


Atherton, Elwood, Collinson, Charles, and Lineback, J. A., 1975, Mississippian System, in Willman, H. B., Atherton, Elwood, Buschbach, T. C., Collinson, Charles, Frye, J. C., Hopkins, M. E., Lineback, J. A., and Simon, J. A., Handbook of Illinois stratigraphy: Illinois State Geological Survey Bulletin 95, p. 123-163.

Collinson, Charles, Rexroad, C. B., and Thompson, T. L., 1971, Conodont zonation of the North American Mississippian: Geological Society of America Memoirs 127, p. 353-394.

Droste, J. B., and Keller, S. J., 1995, Subsurface stratigraphy and distribution of oil fields of the Buffalo Wallow Group (Mississippian) in Indiana: Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 63, 24 p.

Gray, H. H., 1970, Kinkaid Limestone, in Shaver, R. H., Burger, A. M., Gates, G. R., Gray, H. H., Hutchison, H. C., Keller, S. J., Patton, J. B., Rexroad, C. B., Smith, N. M., Wayne, W. J., and Wier, C. E., Compendium of rock-unit stratigraphy in Indiana: Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 43, p. 82-83.

Gray, H. H., and Keller, S. J., 1986, Kinkaid Limestone, in Shaver, R. H., Ault, C. H., Burger, A. M., Carr, D. D., Droste, J. B., Eggert, D. L., Gray, H. H., Harper, Denver, Hasenmueller, N. R., Hasenmueller, W. A., Horowitz, A. S., Hutchison, H. C., Keith, B. D., Keller, S. J., Patton, J. B., Rexroad, C. B., and Wier, C. E., Compendium of Paleozoic rock-unit stratigraphy in Indiana–a revision: Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 59, p. 68-69.

Hansen, W. R., 1991, Suggestions to authors of the reports of the United States Geological Survey (7th ed.): Washington, D.C., U.S. Geological Survey, 289 p.

Horowitz, A. S., and Strimple, H. L., 1974, Chesterian echinoderm zonation in eastern United States: Septieme Congres International de Stratigraphie et de Geologie du Carbonifere Krefeld, August 23-28, 1971, Compte rendu, v. 3, p. 209-220.

Malott, C. A., 1925, The upper Chester of Indiana: Indiana Academy of Science Proceedings, v. 34, p. 103-132.

Malott, C. A., 1931, Geologic structure in the Indian and Trinity Springs locality, Martin County, Indiana: Indiana Academy of Science Proceedings, v. 40, p. 217-231.

Mamet, B. L., and Skipp, B. A., 1971, Lower Carboniferous calcareous Foraminifera–preliminary zonation and stratigraphic implications for the Mississippian of North America: Sixieme Congres International de Stratigraphie et de Geologie du Carbonifere Sheffield, 1967, Compte rendu, v. 3, p. 1,129-1,146.

Shaver, R. H., coordinator, 1984, Midwestern basin and arches region–correlation of stratigraphic units in North America (COSUNA): American Association of Petroleum Geologists Correlation Chart Series.

Swann, D. H., 1963, Classification of Genevievian and Chesterian (Late Mississippian) rocks of Illinois: Illinois State Geological Survey Report of Investigations 216, 91 p.

Weller, Stuart, 1920, The Chester Series in Illinois: Journal of Geology, v. 28, p. 281-303 and 395-416.

Weller, Stuart, 1920, The geology of Hardin County and the adjoining part of Pope County: Illinois State Geological Survey Bulletin 41, 416 p.

For additional information contact:

Nancy Hasenmueller (
Date last revised: August 19, 2016