Masters Theses


"The upper Mississippian Fayetteville Formation in northern Arkansas is primarily a calcareous black shale, but in some localities the upper one third to one half of the formation is made up of alternating black shales and limestones. Comparable lithologies have been suggested by some (Hallam, Ricken, Kent, and Sujkowski) to have been created by the diagenetic segregation of carbonate from calcareous shale.

Petrographic thin section analysis reveals that the lowest limestone beds of the rhythmic upper Fayetteville are made up almost entirely of microspar and all fossil material is recrystallized, even to the point of obliteration in some cases. The intervening calcareous shales contain generally smaller but better preserved fossils and are usually somewhat dolomitic. Faunal differences between the limestones and shales were observed. The limestones and shales immediately below the rhythmic part of the section are generally much more fossiliferous and more phosphatic than the rhythmic lithology.

The organic material present is amorphous and most likely algal in origin. Hydrocarbon analysis indicates that oil generation has occurred and that free or adsorbed hydrocarbons are present in the rock.

Evidence of diagenetic segregation such as destruction of fossils in shaley beds, lateral variation in limestone bed thickness, and lack of correlation between carbonate rhythms and sedimentary or faunal variations was not found. Primary structures and faunal variations suggest that a change in the depositional environment initiated deposition of the rhythmic lithology, and that periodic changes in sediment deposition created the rhythmic lithology"--Abstract, pages ii-iii.


Spreng, Alfred C., 1923-2012

Committee Member(s)

Laudon, Robert C.
Hanna, Samir B.


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Degree Name

M.S. in Geology and Geophysics


Photographs of the Marshall Ark. Fayetteville Shale are included as a supplementary file, with photos stitched together. The detached photos are available in Curtis Laws Wilson Library in an envelope next to the thesis.

A low-resolution is also available as a supplementary file for quicker download.


University of Missouri--Rolla

Publication Date

Fall 1987


ix, 92 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (pages 87-91).

Geographic Coverage

northern Arkansas

Time Period



© 1987 Edith Ann Starbuck, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Thesis - Restricted Access

File Type




Thesis Number

T 5614

Print OCLC #


Electronic OCLC #


Link to Catalog Record

Electronic access to the full-text of this document is restricted to Missouri S&T users. Otherwise, request this publication directly from Missouri S&T Library or contact your local library.

Outcrop.tif (561950 kB)
Marshall Arkansas Fayetteville Shale, high resolution

Outcrop_Low_Resolution.tif (39592 kB)
Marshall Arkansas Fayetteville Shale, quick download

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