The stratigraphy and structure of the basin are reviewed incorporating some of the recent cartographic refinements and including a detailed discussion of the King City fault, whose nature and location have been clarified by recent wildcat drilling. The writer believes that there were two important periods of faulting in the Salinas Valley and that the northern part of the basin can be divided into three important fault blocks—Southwest, Central, and Northeast. The King City fault line separates the Central and Northeast blocks and has had an important influence during Tertiary time, both on sedimentation and the development of structure.

The history of exploration for oil in the Salinas Valley is discussed in chronological order, culminating with the recent discovery of the San Ardo oil field by The Texas Company.

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