Characteristics of Late Wisconsinan tills in eastern Indiana (1973)

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Authors: Ansel Gooding

ABSTRACT: Wisconsinan tills in eastern Indiana from the Shelbyville boundary northward through the Fort Wayne Moraine have been studied as to texture, lithologic character, carbonate content, heavy materials, magnetic susceptibility, and natural radioactivity. Parameters vary among the tills as follows: (1) tills are less sandy and more clayey from south to north; (2) carbonate content, with dolomite the main variable, is relatively low in Shelbyville and Crawfordsville tills, is relatively high in Knightstown till, and decreases rather than uniformly northward through younger tills; (3) heavy minerals are concentrated in the sand-size grades, with the largest quantity in the fine sand fractions; (4) magnetic susceptibility is related to heavy-mineral content and decreases from south to north with the change in texture of the tills; and (5) natural radioactivity is related to clay content and increases from south to north with the change in textural characteristics. Certain textural and compositional characteristics of tills in eastern Indiana are believed to have derived from local bedrock and older drift materials and to have been exhibited dilution effects in the direction of former ice flow and stratigraphically upward in younger tills as older drift was reworked. Contiguous moraines with similar till parameters are interpreted as being related to a single till sheet, but sharp changes in till parameters between moraines are interpreted as suggesting an episode of melting back and readvance. Such events are believed to have occurred between the building of the Knightstown and Union City Moraines and possibly between the building of the Salamonie and Wabash Moraines. The depth of leaching of soils on the drift surfaces is related mainly to textural and compositional characteristics of the drift units and relatively little to differences in geologic age.



Gooding, A. M. 1973,  Characteristics of Late Wisconsinan tills in eastern Indiana: Indiana Geological Survey Bulletin 49, 28 p., 8 fig.


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Keywords: glacial geology, Quaternary, Pleistocene, till, soil, mineralogy, texture, carbonate content

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