IGNIS
Ste. Genevieve Limestone

Age:

Mississippian

Type designation:

Type locality: The Ste. Genevieve Limestone was named by Shumard (1860, p. 406; 1873, p. 293-294) for exposures in the bluff of the Mississippi River south of Ste. Genevieve, Missouri (Smith, 1970; Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). At the type locality the formation is about 100 ft (30 m) thick (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986).

History of usage:

History of name in Indiana: The name “Ste. Genevieve Limestone” was mostly suppressed in favor of the term “St. Louis Limestone” until it was revived by Ulrich and Smith (1905) (Smith, 1970; Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). Beede and others (1915, p. 207) suggested that the Ste. Genevieve Limestone is present in Indiana, but it remained for Cumings (1922, p. 507) to use the name directly (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). Before that time, rocks now designated as the Ste. Genevieve in Indiana had been assigned to the Mitchell Limestone (see under "Blue River Group") or to the Paoli or St. Louis Limestones (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986).

Although Cumings's description was not thorough, use of the name “Ste. Genevieve” was continued in Indiana (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). Only much later were comprehensive descriptions of the formation and its subdivisions in Indiana presented (McGrain, 1943?; Malott, 1952; Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). As described by Malott (1952, p. 8-10), the Ste. Genevieve extended from 20 ft (6 m) or so below the Lost River Chert Bed near the base of the formation to the top of the Bryantsville Breccia Bed, and it consisted in ascending order of the Fredonia, Rosiclare Sandstone, and Levias Members (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). The Ste. Genevieve was later placed in the middle of the Blue River Group by Gray, Jenkins, and Weidman (1960, p. 48) (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986).

Carr, Rexroad, and Gray (1986) noted that the top of the Ste. Genevieve in subsurface usage was placed at the base of the Aux Vases Formation, a position that was generally considered to be somewhat lower stratigraphically than in Indiana outcrop usage. They noted that the Ste. Genevieve of Indiana surface usage therefore differs from usage in the subsurface and in type areas in Illinois.

Droste and Carpenter (1990, p. 14-15) noted that the outcrop partitioning of the Ste. Genevieve was not suitable for use in the subsurface. In their study, they divided the Ste. Genevieve in the subsurface into three members, in ascending order, the Fredonia Member, the Karnak Member, and the Joppa Member. They note that this nomenclature is generally equivalent to members of the same name in Illinois.

Description:

The Ste. Genevieve Limestone in Indiana is a carbonate-rock sequence that is 45 to 220 ft (14 to 67 m) thick and that thickens southward and southwestward (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). Its constituent beds are composed largely of oolitic, skeletal, micritic, and detrital limestone (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). Shale, dolostone, sandstone, and chert compose about 10 percent of the combined Paoli and Ste. Genevieve Limestones (Carr, Leininger, and Golde, 1978, p. 14; Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). The Ste. Genevieve crops out in a northward-narrowing belt from the Ohio River in Harrison and Crawford Counties to west-central Putnam County (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). It is present throughout the Indiana subsurface south of the central parts of Parke and Vermillion Counties and west of its outcrop belt (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986).

The upper contact of the Ste. Genevieve with the Paoli Limestone is somewhat uneven but seems to represent only a minor depositional break (Perry and Smith, 1958, p. 32-33; Gray, Jenkins, and Weidman, 1960, p. 50; Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). North from central Putnam County the Ste. Genevieve is disconformably overlapped by Pennsylvanian rocks (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). Carr, Rexroad, and Gray (1986) note that opinion on the St. Louis-Ste. Genevieve boundary in Indiana ranges from one of unconformity (Bates, 1932, p. 268) to one of transition (Perry, Smith, and Wayne, 1954, p. 30), and according to some opinion (for example, Woodson, 1982), the boundary should be placed somewhat higher above the Lost River Chert Bed.

Correlations:

Carr, Rexroad, and Gray (1986) noted that the correlation of the Ste. Genevieve Limestone of Indiana usage is beset with problems associated with the upper boundary, the lower boundary, and certain members of the formation.

Platycrinites penicius has been reported in the Bryantsville Breccia Bed at the top of the Karnak Member of Indiana, and Talarocrinus has been reported in the overlying Paoli Limestone (Malott, 1952, p. 9, 12; Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). The presence of these fossils indicates that the Ste. Genevieve-Paoli boundary closely approximates the Valmeyeran-Chesterian boundary (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). In the subsurface, Droste and Carpenter (1990, fig. 2) correlated the Fredonia Member and Lost River Chert Bed of Indiana with the Fredonia Limestone and Spar Mountain Sandstone Members of Illinois; the Karnak Member of Indiana with the Karnak Limestone Member of Illinois; and the Joppa Member of Indiana with the Joppa Member of Illinois. Conodonts from these units represent the Gnathodus bilineatus-Cavusgnathus charactus Assemblage Zone (Rexroad and Fraunfelter, 1977, p. 94-97; Collinson, Rexroad, and Thompson, 1971, p. 383).

The Ste. Genevieve Limestone in the Illinois Basin is characterized by the crinoid Platycrinites penicillus Meek and Worthen and the brachiopod ,i>Pugnoides ottumwa (White), but both species are uncommon in Indiana (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). According to Mamet and Skipp (1971), the Ste. Genevieve correlates within foraminiferal Zone 15 and within the Visean Series (approximately Zone V3b) of European usage (Carr, Rexroad, and Gray, 1986). Carr, Rexroad, and Gray (1986) note that Mamet and Skipp’s samples are believed to have been collected, however, from the St. Louis Limestone in the Ste. Genevieve area of Missouri. The Ste. Genevieve more likely correlates, therefore, with foraminiferal Zone 16i (approximately V3c of European usage).

Carr, Rexroad, and Gray (1986) noted that although the lower boundary of the Ste. Genevieve is placed about 20 ft (6 m) below the Lost River Chert Bed, this bed was included in the St. Louis by Cumings (1922, p. 507) and was placed in the Horse Cave Member of the St. Louis by Woodson (1982). Woodson's Horse Cave includes much of the Fredonia as described by Carr, Rexroad, and Gray (1986) and contains conodonts found in the St. Louis Limestone not only at its type locality but also at the type locality of the Ste. Genevieve. These represent the Apatognathus scatenus-Cavusgnathus Assemblage Zone, which indicates a correlation of the lower Fredonia of Indiana usage with the upper part of the St. Louis Limestone and also indicates a hiatus within the Fredonia of Indiana (Rexroad and Fraunfelter, 1977, p. 85).

In 1990, Rexroad, Woodson, and Knox proposed a revision to the St. Louis Limestone-Ste. Genevieve Limestone boundary on outcrop in Indiana and placed the boundary at the contact of the dolomitic or muddy limestone (below) and the light-colored, cross-bedded oolitic limestone (above).

Regional Indiana usage:

Illinois Basin (COSUNA 11)
Supergroup: none
Group: Blue River Group
Formation: Ste. Genevieve Limestone
Illinois Basin Margin (COSUNA 12)
Supergroup: none
Group: Blue River Group
Formation: Ste. Genevieve Limestone

Misc/Abandoned Names:

None

Geologic Map Unit Designation:

Msg

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.)

Map showing the COSUNA areas (heavy black line) that approximate regional bedrock outcrop patterns and major structural features in Indiana, and the COSUNA numbers (large bold font) for these areas. The COSUNA boundaries are limited to state and county boundaries that facilitate coding.

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

Map showing major tectonic features that affect bedrock geology in Indiana.

Major tectonic features that affect bedrock geology in Indiana.

References:

Bates, R. E., 1932, Underground features of Sinking Creek, Washington County, Indiana: Indiana Academy of Science Proceedings, v. 41, p. 263-268.

Beede, J. W., Jackson, T. F., and Malott, C. A., 1915, Geology of the Bloomington quadrangle: Indiana Department of Geology and Natural Resources Annual Report 39, p. 190-312.

Carr, D. D., Leininger, R. K., and Golde, M. V., 1978, Crushed stone resources of the Blue River Group (Mississippian) of Indiana: Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 52, 225 p.

Carr, D. D., Rexroad, C. B., and Gray, H. H., 1986, Ste. Genevieve 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. 128-130.

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.

Cumings, E. R., 1922, Nomenclature and description of the geological formations of Indiana, in Logan, W. N., Cumings, E. R., Malott, C. A., Visher, S. S., Tucker, W. M., Reeves, J. R., and Legge, H. W., Handbook of Indiana geology: Indiana Department of Conservation Publications 21, pt. 4, p. 403-570.

Droste, J. B., and Carpenter, G. L., 1990, Subsurface stratigraphy of the Blue River Group (Mississippian) in Indiana: Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 62, 45 p.

Gray, H. H., Jenkins, R. D., and Weidman, R. M., 1960, Geology of the Huron area, south-central Indiana: Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 20, 78 p.

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.

Malott, C. A., 1952, Stratigraphy of the Ste. Genevieve and Chester formations of southern Indiana: Ann Arbor, Michigan, Edwards Letter Shop, 105 p.

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.

McGrain, Preston, 1943?, The St. Louis and Ste. Genevieve Limestones of Harrison County, Indiana: Indiana Academy of Science Proceedings, v. 52, p. 149-162.

Perry, T. G., and Smith, N. M., 1958, The Meramec-Chester and intra-Chester boundaries and associated strata in Indiana: Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 12, 110 p.

Perry, T. G., Smith, N. M., and Wayne, W. J., 1954, Salem Limestone and associated formations in south-central Indiana: Indiana Geological Survey Field Conference Guidebook 7, 73 p.

Rexroad, C. B., and Fraunfelter, G. H., 1977, Upper Mississippian conodonts and boundary relationships in southern Illinois, in Frank, C. O., ed., Guidebook for field trips–Carbondale 1977: Carbondale, Southern Illinois University Department of Geology, v. 2, Postmeeting field trips, p. 80-103.

Rexroad, C. B., Woodson, F. J., and Knox, L. W., 1990, Revised boundary between the St. Louis and Ste. Genevieve Limestones (Middle Mississippian) on outcrop in Indiana [abs.]: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 22, no. 1, p. 31.

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.

Shumard, B. F., 1860, Observations on the geology of the County of Ste. Genevieve: Academy of Science of St. Louis Transactions, v. 1, no. 3, p. 404-415.

Shumard, B. F., 1873, Ste. Genevieve County, in Reports on the geological survey of the State of Missouri, 1855-1871: Jefferson City, Missouri, p. 290-313.

Smith, N. M., 1970, Ste. Genevieve 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. 143-145.

Ulrich, E. O., and Smith, W. S. T., 1905, The lead, zinc, and fluorspar deposits of western Kentucky U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 36, 218 p.

Woodson, F. J., 1982, Uppermost St. Louis Limestone (Mississippian)–the Horse Cave Member in Indiana: Indiana Academy of Science Proceedings, v. 91, p. 419-427.



For additional information contact:

Nancy Hasenmueller (hasenmue@indiana.edu)
Date last revised: May 23, 2017

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