Palestine Sandstone


Buffalo Wallow Group,

Mississippian System

Type locality and use of name in Illinois: The Palestine Formation was named by Stuart Weller (1913, p. 128-129) for exposures of thick-bedded sandstone, thin-bedded ripple-marked sandstone, and sandy shale, 75 feet (23 m) in total thickness, in Palestine Township, Randolph County, Ill. The name was later changed, without explanation, to Palestine Sandstone (Weller, 1920b, p. 209). This formation, a unit in the standard Chesterian section (Swann, 1963, p. 39-40), is now understood to include much shale and siltstone, although it is dominated by complex lenticular sandstone bodies (Willman and others, 1975, p. 161).

History of name and description in Indiana: In his original study of outcropping upper Chesterian rocks in Indiana, Malott (1925) named a thin sandstone unit the Bristow Sandstone. A general equivalence of this unit to the Palestine Sandstone of Illinois was soon recognized (Malott, 190-il, p. 222), and in an expanded sense that name came into use, replacing the name Bristow (Malott and Esarey, 1940; Malott, Esarey, and Bieberman, 1948). The lithologic character and the nature of the boundaries of this larger unit were never made clear, however, and in a restudy of outcropping upper Chesterian rocks, Gray (1978) concluded that a return to Malott's original concept and name was advisable for surface use. (See article on the Bristow Sandstone Member.) The Palestine Sandstone is now restricted to subsurface use in Indiana, where it applies to a somewhat indefinite unit of shale and sandstone that overlies the Menard Limestone and is overlain by the Clore Limestone. It is known from Dubois and Knox Counties southwestward. Where higher Chesterian rocks are missing as a result of pre-Pennsylvanian erosion, the Palestine Sandstone is disconformably overlain by the Mansfield Formation (Morrowan). Reliable thickness data are not available.

For Indiana usage the Palestine Sandstone is here assigned to the Buffalo Wallow Group.

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