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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

AAPG Bulletin


Volume: 55 (1971)

Issue: 2. (February)

First Page: 360

Last Page: 360

Title: Origin of Coloration in Upper Devonian Catskill Facies, New York: ABSTRACT

Author(s): Herman E. Roberson, Kenneth Eichenlaub

Article Type: Meeting abstract


Mineralogic and chemical studies of interbedded red and greenish-gray sandstone, siltstone, and mudstone Previous HitfromNext Hit the Upper Devonian Catskill facies in New York indicate that the red coloration is a result of the presence of diagenetic red hematite pigment. Thin sections of red sandstones show hematite partly replacing rock fragments composed of fine-grained mica and chlorite, as well as coating sand grains and forming patchy interstitial matrix material. Hematite is absent at many sand-grain contacts in red rocks.

X-ray Previous HitdiffractionNext Hit studies of powdered rock samples and oriented clay aggregates show that the greenish-gray rocks are illite poor and chlorite rich relative to interbedded red rocks. X-ray Previous HitdiffractionNext Hit intensity data indicate that chlorite is more iron rich in green or drab rocks. There is no significant difference in the total iron content of interbedded red and greenish-gray rocks; however, small green patches in otherwise red rocks have significantly lower amounts of total iron than do the surrounding redbeds.

Iron-bearing opaque minerals are present in very small amounts in both red and greenish-gray rocks suggesting that iron precipitated as hematite was not derived Previous HitfromTop these minerals.

These results suggest that hematite in these redbeds has formed diagenetically under near-surface oxidizing conditions, largely controlled by the level of the groundwater table. Chlorite is believed to be the major source of the iron that has been precipitated as hematite. Except for localized green patches where reducing conditions prevailed because of the presence of organic matter, the greenish gray rocks are believed to be composed of detrital sediments that have undergone little alteration.

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