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Abstract

The 295-300 Ma Petersburg batholith in east-central Virginia forms one of the largest and northernmost of the Alleghanian plutonic complexes in the southern Appalachian Piedmont. The batholith is primarily composed of granite including massive and foliated (both magmatic and solid-state fabrics) varieties. The plutonic complex intruded medium-grade metamorphosed volcanic/plutonic rocks of the Roanoke Rapids terrane. The western edge of the batholith experienced right lateral transpressional deformation associated with movement on the Hylas fault zone during the Alleghanian orogeny; this was followed by normal faulting and exhumation during the development of the Triassic Richmond basin. Much of the batholith was buried by a thin veneer of primarily Cenozoic siliciclastic sediments at the western edge of the Atlantic Coastal Plain. Granite rocks of the Petersburg batholith have long been quarried for both dimension and crushed stone. The purpose of this trip is to discuss the age, origin, and tectonic significance of the Petersburg batholith.

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