Abstract

Four major thrust faults dominate the Great Smoky Mountains foothills region: the Greenbrier, Dunn Creek, Miller Cove, and Great Smoky. The Greenbrier and Dunn Creek thrust sheets were emplaced prior to Taconian regional cleavage development and peak metamorphism. Cleavage and most deformation features formed during the emplacement of a thrust sheet now floored by the Miller Cove thrust fault. Alleghanian emplacement of the Great Smoky-Miller Cove thrust sheet dissected these earlier structures. If the effects of the younger structures are removed, the basal faults of the Dunn Creek and Greenbrier sheets reveal ramp- flat geometries typical of foreland fold-thrust belts including bedding-parallel faults, ramps, and angular ramp-related folds. The Great Smoky Mountains region is therefore unique in the southern Appalachians because a foreland-style fold- thrust belt of Taconian age is well preserved.

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