Abstract

The Norumbega fault zone is often cited as a post-Acadian suture between exotic blocks, even though stratigraphic, structural, and metamorphic data indicate that there is little offset of the Silurian-Devonian strata that the zone cuts in eastern Maine. Similarly, the Kingman fault zone has been shown by gravity and geochemical studies to separate distinct crustal blocks, whereas mapping shows that it lies entirely within a Silurian turbidite package. These conflicts are resolved if the two fault zones represent boundaries between Ordovician or older crustal blocks that had accreted to form a composite terrane prior to deposition of the cover sequences. The faults now mapped within these younger rocks formed by reactivation of the pre-Silurian boundaries during late Acadian time; movement continued until the late Carboniferous. Most of the accretionary history of Maine had thus ended before the Silurian. A complex composite terrane may have formed during Cambrian-Ordovician time that (1) interacted with cratonic North America during the Taconian orogeny and (2) became the “basement” upon which the Silurian and Lower Devonian strata of eastern Maine were deposited.

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