2015 GSA Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, USA (1-4 November 2015)

Paper No. 291-18
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-6:30 PM


NEALE, Shannon1, GINTER, Benjamin M.2, GRAHAM, Jenna1, REIS, Alex3, LEES, Mike E.1, MAYNARD, J. Barry3 and HUFF, Warren1, (1)Department of Geology, University of Cincinnati, 345 Clifton Court, Cincinnati, OH 45221, (2)Department of Geology, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH 45238, (3)Department of Geology, University of Cincinnati, 500 Geology-Physics Building, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH 45221, Warren.Huff@uc.edu

The Mill Creek River Valley is located in southwestern Ohio just north of the center of the Ohio River Valley. This study investigated a core from the southern end of the valley with the intention to compare the core with the well documented glacial, fluvial and human occupation history of the northern portion of the Ohio River Valley. This study utilized macroscopic observation, X-ray fluorescence (XRF), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and energy dispersive scanning electron spectroscopy to analyze grain size, chemical composition, and mineralogy with depth. The study identified five distinct intervals of deposition, which correlated with the established history of the region. The study also identified an anthropogenic influence on the sediment of the Mill Creek Valley which used to be a heavily industrialized area.

The XRF data was the most useful in being able to delineate between the five layers. Layer 1 (0-16.5’) was labeled fill, and it was the easiest to separate due to the large amount of heavy metal deposits found in this section of the core. Layer 2 (16.5’-26.5’) was labeled clay and silt, and it is believed this layer is from glaciation episodes associated with this area. Layer 3 (26.5’- 36.5’) was labeled clay and is separated from the previous layer by a marked increase in SiO2, Yttrium, and Th/Fe. Layer 4 (36.5’- 75’) was labeled lake clay/lean clay, and Layer 5 (75’+) was labeled alluvial silt and has a marked increase in Potassium Oxide (K2O) and Strontium (Sr).