NEHRP Clearinghouse

Title
Birth of the Mountains. The Geologic Story of the Southern Appalachian Mountains.
File
PB2002102629.pdf
Author(s)
Clark, S. H. B.
Source
January 2001, 26 p.
Abstract
The Southern Appalachian Mountains include the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Blue Ridge Parkway, several National Forests, and numerous State and privately owned parks and recreation areas. The region is known worldwide for its great beauty and biological diversity. Why does this area have such beautiful scenery and animals that is greater than in all of Northern Europe. How do the mountains, and the rocks and minerals of which they are made, affect the lives of people. How do people affect the mountains. To address these questions, we need to understand the geologic events that have shaped this region. We need to know how events that took place millions of years ago have influenced the landscape, climate, soils, and living things we see today. In this booklet, we will start at the beginning of the history recorded in the rocks and look at the major stages in development of the mountains and landscape. For each stage we will show where evidence can be seen today and give examples of how the past affects human history and our lives today. This story is based on what geologists discovered by mapping, measuring, and sampling rocks of this region for more than a century and by fitting those observations into the worldwide geologic puzzle that is the history of the Earth. have influenced the landscape, climate, soils, and living things we see today.
Keywords
Supercontinents; Rocks; Erosion; Inland seas; Solid rocks flow; Molten rocks; Earthquakes; Geology; Faults; Biodiversity; Ocoee Basin; Appalachian Mountains; Travel; Mountains; Volcanoes; Cherokee Indians