Historical Introduction : Theories of the Basin Ranges

Gilbert's explanation of the isolated mountain ranges in the Great Basin of the western United States as uplifted and more or less dissected fault-blocks has received, since its first announcement in 1874, several modifications, the most important of which is one proposed two years later by Powell, whose contribution thus made to the solution of the Basin-Range problem is not so well known as it deserves to be.

It may be recalled, in this connection, that the first theory to account for the Basin ranges was proposed in 1870 by King, who then announced that they consist of “a series of conformably stratified beds, reaching from the early Azoic up to the late Jurassic period, when these level beds were compressed into vast mountain corrugations and elevated above the sea in a general wide and high plateau,” . . .

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