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Abstract

Middle Cambrian–Lower Ordovician (Sauk megasequence) rocks of southern Missouri have attracted interest because they host the large Mississippi Valley-type ore deposits of that region. A Proterozoic igneous and metamorphic complex nonconformably underlies this megasequence and Mississippian and Pennsylvanian strata unconformably overlay these units. Strata of the Sauk megasequence in southern Missouri include, in ascending order, the Cambrian Lamotte Sandstone, Bonneterre Dolomite, Davis Formation, Derby-Doerun Dolomite, Potosi Dolomite, and Eminence Dolomite, which are overlain by the Ordovician Gasconade Dolomite, Roubidoux Formation, Jefferson City Dolomite, and Cotter Dolomite.

Cambrian depositional facies in southern Missouri are small- to large-scale, unconformity-bounded, transgressive-regressive sequences, and are characterized by distinct facies in linear belts that developed on and adjacent to basement highs. These include intrashelf-basin facies distal from basement highs, platform-edge facies in narrow belts adjacent to highs, and back-reef facies proximal to and within the St. Francois Mountains. A distinct rift-graben facies is characteristic of deposition of these units in the Reelfoot rift. An epeiric sea that extended over the region controlled Lower Ordovician deposition. Lower Ordovician strata are com-posed of five third-order sequences, punctuatedbyregional and sub regional unconformities. The strata are characterized by facies that have regional lateral continuity.

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