Megascopic examination of several hundred cores taken in the Chesapeake Bay and on the adjacent Continental Shelf has shown that many sand cores from the shelf show a preferred depth of accumulation of large shells and pebbles while cores from inside the Bay usually do not. The hypothesis that the preferential sorting of large sized particles in sand cores is accomplished by swell is advanced. Observations which suggest the way the mechanism provided by passing swell operates are described. The importance of the hypothesis to paleontology and sedimentary geology is briefly discussed.

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