Mark T. Swanson; Preexisting fault control for Mesozoic basin formation in eastern North America. Geology ; 14 (5): 419–422. doi: https://doi.org/10.1130/0091-7613(1986)14<419:PFCFMB>2.0.CO;2
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A specific near-universal structural control for Mesozoic basin formation is apparent within the Appalachians as a preexisting system of high-angle reverse and dextral strike-slip faults of late Paleozoic and older age. These discrete crustal discontinuities, rather than just the general structural grain, were reactivated during extension associated with Late Triassic-Early Jurassic rifting between eastern North America and western Africa. Selective reactivation of high-angle fault exposures, as well as the subsurface reactivation of horizontal thrust surfaces, has played an important role in localizing rift basin formation in eastern North America.