Abstract

Overlying the Keweenawan lavas of northern Wisconsin and Michigan is a thick sequence of terrestrial sandstone, shale, and siltstone that has undergone some tectonic deformation associated with movement along thrust faults and the development of the Lake Superior syncline. Thermal and alternating field demagnetization, chemical leaching, and multivector analysis using orthogonal projections reveal a trivector structure of the natural remanent magnetization (NRM) of the Fond du Lac Formation and Middle River section (Amnicon and Orienta Formations), and a bivector structure of the NRM of the Eileen section (Eileen Formation). The components may be classified by their physical properties as revealed by demagnetization. A population of high blocking temperature components, K1, is found in all three sections and gives poles as follows: Fond du Lac, 16°N, 160°E; Middle River, 25°N, 148°E; Eileen, 20°N, 156°E after structural correction is applied. A population of intermediate blocking temperature components, K2, is post-tectonic and found only in the Fond du Lac Formation and Middle River section. Poles calculated from K2 fall among the Grenville type poles (Fond du Lac, 9°S, 145°E; Middle River, 24°S, 162°E). A third population of components, K3, has low blocking temperature and coercivity and is isolated only by chemical leaching. K3 has steep positive inclination, northern declination, and is post-tectonic. It is interpreted as a recent magnetization.Any interpretation of the path of apparent polar wander for North America must accommodate the sequence of magnetization K1 to K2. The timing of tectonism in the Keweenawan basin is bracketed by the times of acquisition of K1 and K2. These results reconfirm some recent interpretations that include Grenville poles on the polar wander track of interior Laurentia.

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