To Professor E. T. Cox, State Geologist:

SIR -- In your letter, dated May 26, 1869, you suggest the following plan of survey and report upon the geology, etc., of Franklin county:
"1. Boundary of county, surface, configuration, streams, etc.
"2. Geological formations and descriptive geology, economical geology, ores, building stone, and all minerals of use.
"3. Timber and agriculture."
These instructions I have endeavored to carry out, and herewith respectfully submit for your consideration the following report:

Franklin county is bounded on the east by the State of Ohio; on the south, by Dearborn and Ripley counties; on the west, by Decatur and Rush counties; and on the north, by Fayette and Union. It contains about four hundred square miles. At least half the county is very much broken up into ridges and hills, separated by deep ravines and valleys of denudation, usually narrow upon the smaller streams, but occasionally spreading out to half a mile in width.

The principal rivers are, the main White Water and its two branches, the East and West Forks, which unite at Brookville, the county seat, in latitude 39° 28' north, longitude 85° 05' west -- approximately.
The valley of the main river will average rather more than a mile in width, bounded throughout its whole course by beautiful sloping hills, ridges, promontories and rounded eminences, in many cases covered with forest trees and shrubbery, presenting a scene of unusual beauty throughout its whole course in the county.
The principal tributaries of the West Fork are Pipe creek, Salt creek, Sein creek, Garrison creek and Duck creek, all in the western part of the county. Pipe creek is about fifteen miles in length, and heads in Ripley county; Salt creek is probably twenty miles long, and heads in Decatur. The other streams are small.
The tributaries of the East Fork, within the bounds of the county are two -- Templetons creek and Wolf creek -- both small and unimportant streams.
The principal branches of the main river are Big Cedar, Little Cedar and Blue creek.
Several of these streams furnish a considerable amount of water in their upper course, but usually become entirely dry near their mouths in the latter part of the summer, the water disappearing among the gravel and sand.
I am informed by Hon. John H. Farquhar, who was formerly engaged as an engineer upon the White Water Canal, that the amount of water furnished by the river at a medium stage was, for the East Fork 2,700, and for the West Fork 4,300 cubic feet per minute. The river, at the time the canal was constructed, afforded considerably more water than at present.
White Water is a very rapid stream, having, upon the average, a fall of six feet to the mile, from Hagerstown, in Wayne county, to Elizabethtown, in the State of Ohio. Of the amount of water power it is capable of furnishing, something may be said hereafter.

The greater number of rocks within the county belong to the lower Silurian system, the balance to the upper Silurian and Devonian formations. These rocks have evidently been "deposited at the bottom of a deep primitive ocean," and consist of alternate layers of semi-crystaline rocks and other sedimentary deposits, mostly in thin strata, varying from an inch to twelve or fifteen in thickness. These sub-crystaline rocks are mostly composed of carbonate of lime, divided by beds of indurated bluish or gray clay, regularly stratified and divided by cleavage planes. This clay, properly a clay marl, contains a large amount of lime, and effervesces freely with sulphuric acid; upon exposure to the air, it slowly decomposes and crumbles to dust. The rocks contain millions of marine fossils, in great variety, many of them being a mass of shells cemented together with lime.

The blue limestone is the lowest rock which has been exposed at the bottoms of our streams. It underlies the whole region, and is the only rock found in the southeastern third of the county, except hypozoic boulders, which are found in all situations, from the highest to the lowest grounds.
This limestone, with its accompanying marls, is about four hundred feet thick in the southeastern part of the county, and three hundred and fifteen at Brookville, a mile and a half north of which it disappears, under a drab colored limestone, which is from six to twenty-two inches in thickness -- the blue belonging to the lower Silurian, and the drab to the upper Silurian group.
In the blue limestone the following fossils were found, that are referable to the Trenton period:
Petraia corniculum, Columnaria alveolata, Chætetes lycoperdon, Asaphus gigas, Calymene senaria, Orthis Lynx, O. occidentalis, O. testudinaria, Strophomena rugosa, Leptæna sericea, Rhynchonella increbescense, Pleurotomaria lenticularis, Murchisonia bicincta, M. bellacincta, Bellerophon bilo-

S. G. R. -- 12.

batus, Endoceras proteiformes, Cyrtoceras annulatum; and to the Hudson Period: Ambonychia bellastriata.
In the buff colored stone, which is dolomitic, I found the Calymene Blumenbachii, which leads me to infer that it belongs to the Niagara Period.
The surface of the county was originally almost a level plain, which is now varied and cut up by the valleys which the streams have worn for themselves during the past ages. Beyond the heads of the streams, where the table land has not been changed by running water, the highest land is so flat as almost to deserve the name of marsh or swamp; yet these flats are not so wet as to prevent the growth of forest trees. Thus it will be apparent that we really have no such thing as hills or mountains, yet, to a person in the valleys or ravines, the rapid slopes, ridges and spurs, give every appearance of his being in a hilly country. Such is the appearance along the valley of White Water and its tributaries. When, therefore, the term hill is used in this report, I wish it to be understood as applicable to the slopes bordering the valleys, and not to hills, properly so called.
The blue limestone, so far as I have observed it in Franklin and neighboring counties, is found in strata varying from less than an inch to twelve or fourteen in thickness. These layers seem to the eye to be nearly horizontal, and occasionally can be traced for half a mile, the inclination only becoming apparent when the out-crop is found bordering streams which run parallel to the dip. I have found it impossible to satisfy myself as to the exact amount of inclination. The dip of the blue limestone rocks is to the southeast, at the rate of four feet to the mile, according to the best estimate I can make, after having examined them from the southeastern to northwestern angle of the county. One great difficulty in making a correct estimate of the dip, is the fact that the layers occasionally run out, and are replaced by other strata slightly different, or by the blue marl, so that the identification becomes difficult, and often impossible; all are, however, geologically identical.
The several strata are separated by the blue marl, which

varies from a few inches to one or two feet in thickness. The proportion of stone to the clay varies in different localities, but the stone in Franklin county I think preponderates over the clay marls. The rocks are all divided by vertical fissures into irregular fragments, from twelve inches or less to eight or ten feet in diameter.
There are, however, a few strata in the hills of a smooth, very hard fissile stone, which is often divided into rhomboidal forms -- one set of vertical fissures running from southeast to northwest, the other from west of south to a little east of north. This fragmentary arrangement of the rocks accounts for the rounded contour of the hills, points and ridges. When by floods or other causes the rock becomes exposed, the marl crumbles to pieces by the action of the atmosphere; the strata fall successively, and slide down with the unctuous mud, and are never left standing out in mural cliffs, or producing cascades, as is the case with the "cliff limestone," of which I shall speak hereafter.
It is a curious fact that, notwithstanding the immense number of rocks, from the lowest point we can observe to near the tops of the highest levels, comparatively few loose stones are found at the surface. The hills and slopes of the valleys are covered with clay and other diluvial matter, in all respects identical with that found upon the uplands; and strangely enough, though so near the lime rock, the soil of the hillsides, as is the case in all the uplands and flats, seems to be devoid of lime -- a fact scarcely credible when we consider the immense amount of this mineral immediately below the surface. If lime ever existed in any quantity in our upland soils (which is doubtful), it has been leached out during the lapse of ages by the constant percolation of water, charged with destructive chemical agents, ever since their deposition. The probability is that those lands which are deficient in lime, would be benefitted by the application of the marls found everywhere between the rocks -- and that those which have been exhausted by cultivation might, by a proper application of lime and manures, be restored to their original fertility.

The blue clay or marl found between the strata of blue limestone, it was said, by Dr. Locke, contains thirty-five or forty per cent of lime. It effervesces as freely with acids as the rock itself.
These marl strata generally contain no fossils. There are, however, exceptions to this rule in those found near the summit of the hills. During their deposition, animal life, in many instances, seems to have ceased, to be renewed again in the next succeeding stratum, which abounds, as do most others, with marine shells, nearly all as perfect as during the lifetime of the animal; and in almost every rock the great mass of shells show all their convex surfaces upon one side, and the concave surface upon the other. Occasionally stones are found composed almost wholly of shells standing perpendicular to the surface, and fitting into each other as though they had been so placed by design.
I have found it impossible to determine the number of strata with absolute certainty which our valley slopes contain, for in no place is there more than fifty feet in perpendicular height exposed, except at a cut through a ridge two miles west of Brookville, made in the construction of the White Water Valley railroad, which is about eighty feet in depth. In this cut I have counted about one hundred strata, varying from half an inch in thickness to one foot. From the lowest outcrop at Brookville to the point where the blue limestone disappears beneath another formation, it is three hundred and fifteen feet, which at the rate of one hundred for eighty, would give for the whole elevation upwards of three hundred and ninety strata, which I think may be relied on as nearly correct -- if any difference, rather under than above the true number.
The blue limestone is very valuable, being a good building stone, good for burning into quicklime, and for McAdamizing roads. Every rock which has sufficient firmness to bear hammer-dressing, makes a good and durable building material. When free from cavities, much of it is susceptible of a very high polish. By Dr. Locke's analysis of the same character of rock, made some years ago, he

found it to contain 90.93 per cent of carbonate of lime, a trace of iron, magnesia, etc.
In consequence of the fact that this rock is always broken up into fragments, and the layers separated by unctuous blue clay marl, which decomposes and crumbles to pieces upon exposure to the atmosphere, thereby causing the fragments to fall, as I have before stated, there are no cliffs. But in the ravines, where the loose stones and other debris have been washed away by floods so as to clearly expose the rocks, they are found overlapping each other like shingles upon the roof of a house. The only exception to this arrangement is at their junction with the lowest member of the Upper Silurian group, which is a rock of superior thickness to any of the blue stones, and longer resists the action of air and water. Where this rock crosses the ravines, having small running streams, cascades are formed from six to twelve or fifteen feet in height.

Two miles north of Brookville, upon a ridge running north and south, and at a height of three hundred and fifteen feet above low water mark at the river, there is the first outcrop of a rock of very different appearance from any below it. Externally, it is of a drab or cream color for one-third of its thickness, both upon the upper and lower surfaces, the center third being of a pale blue color. This is the character of those near the surface. After the rock has been stripped below all atmospheric influences, it is entirely blue. This is a hard, compact limestone, which "spawls" with conchoidal fracture, and probably contains magnesia. It is sufficiently hard to work well to sharp edges. It contains but very few fossils. This rock is used extensively for building purposes, and mostly bids fair to be sufficiently durable.
In most situations where it is found, there are above it several strata of nodular bituminous limestone, in the aggregate occupying a space of from five to ten feet in perpendicular altitude. The strata are separated by beds of

yellow clay. This clay abounds in fossils, and in some situations above the bituminous layers, are vast numbers of bivalve shells and cyathophylla, the latter in greater numbers than I have ever observed them elsewhere. Specimens of these fossils will be forwarded to you, marked as occurring above these rocks, as well as those from the rocks immediately below.
This rock appears near the surface on the farm of Dr. Peck, four and a half miles northeast of Brookville, and is there three hundred and fifty-two feet below [should read: above] the level of the river; a mile and a half west of Peck's we find it on the farm of Josiah Allen, at the height of three hundred and twenty-four feet; two miles west of Allen's, at H. H. Schrichte's quarry, it is found to be three hundred and fifteen feet in height, showing a westward dip of nearly five feet to the mile. Six miles west of Schrichte's quarry, on the farm of C. T. Gordon, we again find it at an elevation of two hundred and ninety-seven feet; and a mile and a half farther west, on the farm of M. C. Gordon, it is found at the height of two hundred and fifty-two feet -- a descent of forty-five feet, or thirty feet to the mile.
The dip of this formation is almost exactly opposite to that of the blue limestone strata, and for ten miles nearly at the same rate of inclination. From Gordon's farm the descent is much greater.
In all situations I have found this rock near the tops of the hills, with little above it except the nodular limestone, and with the further exception, that west of the West Fork, in Laurel township, it dips down and under thirty or forty feet of thin limestone strata, similar in most respects to blue limestone, which underlies it at other places, except that here they are comparatively devoid of fossils. Immediately upon this formation, two miles west of Laurel, and near the northwestern part of the county, we find the rock, called by the older Ohio geologists "Cliff limestone." It belongs partly to the Niagara epoch of the Silurian period, and the upper members probably to the Devonian.

Heretofore it seems to have been the opinion of our geologists that this formation was wanting in Franklin county -- and indeed I was not aware myself that it existed here until I examined that section of the county. I find it very near the Fayette county line; but whether it is to be found north of that line, I am at present not prepared to say. It is confined to a belt of country about two and a half miles wide, beginning near the north line of the county, partly in Laurel and partly in Posey townships, and running south, probably into Ripley and Jefferson counties.
The lower member of this "Cliff-rock," as it appears in most places, is exceedingly rough, irregularly stratified in layers usually three or four inches thick, divided by vertical seams, which, upon exposure to the atmosphere, open, and the rock splits up into small angular fragments; this is particularly the case in the central parts of the cliff, leaving the upper and firmer parts of the rock overhanging like a projecting roof. The limestone of these cliffs is regularly interstratified with hornstone or chert.
The cliffs vary in height from ten to twnty-four feet, the latter being the highest I have measured.
Immediately upon this formation we find our best building stone, one or two being cream-colored; the latter are very hard, and contain silex, being what is termed "cherty limestone." Some of these courses make as fine flagging as can be found anywhere, and can be quarried of any desired dimensions. They are rough upon both surfaces, being full of protuberances and indentations, the protuberances of each fitting into the indentations of those above and below, there being no clay or other substance between them. The layers, though fitting very closely, in most cases are easily separated. As they lie in the quarry, they present the appearance of regular range-work, having a perpendicular face with narrow seams, which are as straight and true as a mason could put them up.
The district in which this formation is found being so narrow, I have not been able to ascertain the amount or direction of the dip, or, indeed, whether it has any. All

the locations in which I have found the "Cliff" rock seem to be very nearly of the same height.
About three miles southwest of Laurel, on the lands of Mr. Derbyshire, there is a miniature Niagara, a perpendicular fall of forty feet over the coarse irregular rock above mentioned. The shelving rock is in the shape of a horseshoe, the semicircle being forty or fifty yards in circuit, the rock overhanging about twenty feet. Beneath the fall there is a slaty, calcareous, crumbling rock (probably hydraulic cement rock), twenty feet thick, which, from atmospheric influences, is constantly crumbling and falling out, leaving a tolerably dry cavern. About half a mile northeast of this there is another fall, of thirty-five feet, in every respect similar to the former except in height. Above both of these falls, for some distance back, all the strata, of the same character as those taken from the neighboring quarries, have been worn away by the action of the small streams which form the cascades. During a visit to Logansport, in Cass county, the past summer, I observed a rock of the same character, and of the same geological formation, as that found at Derbyshire's falls, occupying the bed of the Wabash river, in front of that town -- hence I infer that the "Cliff limestone" of Indiana has but litt e, if any, inclination in a northern or southern direction, for there cannot be much difference in the height of our quarries and that of the rock at Logansport. Upon Sein creek, which empties into the West fork a mile below Laurel, there are a number of cliffs varying from ten to twenty-four feet in height. In several places the rock has been precipitated into the creek in large blocks weighing many tons, and though apparently so loosely stratified, and divided by so many seams, they still retain their original firmness and show no signs of disintegration. This Niagara group, and the others mentioned above as belonging to the upper Silurian, do not altogether make more than a hundred feet in perpendicular height. The balance of the formation, if it ever existed in the neighborhood of Brookville, and I presume it did, has been worked [should read: worn] away by some great denuding flood, evidences of which may be

seen everywhere. In Schrichte's quarry, two miles north of Brookville, which occupies the top of a narrow ridge, running north and south, we find that one-half of the original formation has been worn off down to the magnesian rock, and subsequently filled up with gravel and clay very distinct from the other half with its nodular limestone and diluvial clay.
In the Sein creek cliffs on the farm of Mr. Bowers there are thirty-two strata of limestone, varying from an inch to three feet in thickness, interstratified with which there are fourteen of hornstone or chert, generally about three inches in thickness.
The Niagara Group, as well as the first rock above the blue "Cincinnati limestone," where they exist separately, are always near the tops of the hills, and are generally, though not always, covered with clay, gravel and broken limestone. The "Cliff" rock is covered with yellow ferruginous clay and fragments of hornstone.

The superficial material resting upon the rocks above described consist mostly of yellow clay, mixed more or less with small pieces of broken limestone, gravel from primitive rocks, and, in a few localities, almost pure gravel is found, in others sand, and frequently sand and gravel mixed. In no instance upon the uplands or tops of the hills do the rocks penetrate through these materials, and we find them only where the drift has been worn away by the action of the streams. The drift varies from four or five feet to forty or fifty in thickness upon the uplands. The slopes of the valleys and side-hills seem to be covered with drift similar to that upon the high grounds, but not of equal thickness. In digging wells upon the uplands the roots and bodies of trees are frequently found at various depths from ten to thirty feet; and, occasionally, limbs and leaves are found, with vegetable mould at various depths.

Boulders of granite, hornblende, greenstone, syenite, gneiss, and, in fact, of almost every species of metamorphic rock, are found all over the county, upon the highest as well as the lowest grounds. They are always found upon the surface and never beneath, except under slides or where gravel in the terraces has been washed over them. I have seen a few granite boulders that would square five or six feet; they are, however, generally much smaller, and are usually worn and rounded by attrition.

This deposit is found in many situations in the county, but more frequently in the gravelly terraces along the river, where the water of springs has percolated through the gravel, frequently forming large, rough, conglomerate rocks by cementing the gravel into a mass. In other places we find leaves and sticks mixed up in these formations, so perfect that we may even recognize them and determine upon what trees they grew. Around certain springs, the waters of which contain iron, ferruginous tufa is occasionally found in small quantities, containing, I apprehend, not more than five to ten per cent of metal.

Upon the side-hills parallel to the course of the main river, and upon all its branches, there are benches or ancient terraces -- upon the river slopes usually but two or three, but upon the smaller streams there are more. I have counted as many as ten upon a side-hill bordering Blue creek. Upon these ancient benches or beaches, we find no gravel or sand, nothing but soil, clays and rocks in situ. On the main river, throughout its course in the county, there are from two to four terraces composed of gravel, sand, broken limestone and small boulders of metamorphic rocks. The first terraces, or lowest bottoms, are usually not more than ten or twelve feet above the water; the

highest vary from seventy to eighty feet, and are often, at the same location, found upon both sides of the river. Where the highest terraces occupy the points just above the junction of the main river and its branches, we find the lower ends composed, usually, of fine sand drifted in strata, first to the east, then to the west, as though they had been washed up by the waves and heaped upon each other as the wind changed from east to west, when the land was slowly emerging from or sinking below the surface, during the last submergence of the continent. These gravelly terraces have evidently been deposited since the valley was excavated to its present depth for they rest upon the rocks in situ, in some cases below the present bed of the river, and as they could only have been formed under water, it follows that the valley has been submerged since its excavation to at least the height of this formation.

No mineral springs of a medicinal character are known to exist in the county, with the exception of a few which contain a small percentage of iron, with possibly a small amount of saline sulphur. If springs exist having valuable medical qualities, I have not been able to discover them. Springs, of any kind, are much fewer than we would be led to expect from the configuration of the country. I think the limited number may be accounted for by the fact that all the rock strata, as well as the marl-beds, are divided by vertical seams, which allow the water to pass through them. It is true there are in the county quite a number of springs, but they are not by any means so numerous as I have observed them in other hilly sections. The water of all our springs contains a quantity of carbonate of lime, and is therefore familiarly called "hard water."

Everywhere between the strata of the blue limestone, there are beds of clay marl, varying from an inch to two feet in thickness. In many instances it has nearly the

hardness of stone, and is regularly stratified; it effervesces as freely with sulphuric acid as the limestone above and below it, showing that it contains lime in abundance. Near the mouths of all the small tributaries of the river, and at a height equal to the gravelly terraces, there are large accumulations of marl, which has evidently been ground up or dissolved by water, which has transported it from the higher grounds to near the mouths of the streams, where its course has been checked up by the waters under which the terraces were formed. In these situations it contains some gravel and abundant angular fragments of limestone, identical with that in the surrounding hills. In some situations this marl is soft and plastic, having very much the color and consistence of putty. The marl-beds are so numerous and common all along Whitewater and its branches, that it seems unnecessary to point out particular localities.
In one locality, on the lands of Mr. H. C. Kunkle, [should read: Kemble] in Laurel township, there is a bed of whitish or cream colored marl about eighteen inches thick, lying immediately upon the "Cliff," or Devonian rocks.

Fossils in great abundance are found in almost every rock of the blue or Lower Silurian limestone.
The lowest rock which shows at the water's edge, near Brookville, is almost a mass of broken and prostrate corals, cemented together by lime. In this rock, standing perpendicular to its surface, are numerous stems of encrinites, which appear to have grown up through the corals after they had been broken and prostrated. Corals are found in most of the rocks, but nowhere so numerous as in this stratum, and in others found at an altitude of three hundred and twenty-five feet. The latter differ from the former in several respects, but particularly in being flat in many instances, while the former are nearly round. I send samples of both kinds.
Besides these we have --

Strophomena rugosa, in great profusion.
     S. planæanvoxa,    "     " [should read planoconvexa]
     S. deltoidea,      "     "
     S. alternata, very numerous.
     Orthis testudinaria, very numerous.
     Orthis subquadrata,          "
     Orthis occidentalis,         "
     Orthis biferatus, Va. Lynx,  "
     Spirifer,  not numerous.
     Halysites,  of Niagara group.
     Favosites, of the Devonian.
     Petraia, very numerous in Silurian rocks.
     Maclurea,  rare.
     Encrinites,  of several species.
     Calymene Blumenbachii, and several other trilobites.
     Astrea rugosa,  rare.
     Rhynchonella Wilsoni, rare.
     Cyathophyllum turbinatum,  rare.
In addition to these there are many other varieties which I am not able to identify.

Nodules of iron ore are occasionally found among the drift and gravel of the river banks, bearing evidence of having been water-worn, and doubtless were brought here with the other drift materials. The quantity is too small ever to be of any value. Pyrites, or sulphide of iron, is generally diffused among all the rocks, but in very small quantities; it is found between the layers, adhering to their surfaces, and occasionally crystals are found in the blue clay. The most beautiful specimens I have seen were found in the Niagara rock in Posey township. It has the color of gold.

There is a tradition that lead was once found upon a small tributary of the East fork, one mile from Brookville.

It is still the belief of some people that lead exists there, yet no man has been found who has himself seen the ore. The opinion is founded upon the old story, that an Indian had communicated the secret to some of the early settlers.
I have never been able to find it, and have no idea that lead will ever be found there, or indeed in any other part of the county, unless it be in very small quantities in the Devonian group.

A single piece of native copper has been found in the county, weighing about six pounds. It was no doubt transported with the drift from Lake Superior, as it was rounded, and bore other evidences of attrition.

In the northwest part of the county, in Laurel and Posey townships, upon Sein creek and its branches, gold is generally disseminated in very small particles. A common panfull of gravel and sand, when washed out, generally shows from two to three particles of gold in thin scales. None has ever been found larger than a grain of wheat. Though so generally disseminated, it is doubtful whether the quantity is sufficient to pay the expenses of washing it out. Gold has also been found upon Little Duck creek, and in other places in the county. The yellow clay in the neighborhood where gold is found, is mixed with quartz or chert, and whether the gold belongs to this formation, or has been transported in the drift, it would be difficult to say. Hornstone, in horizontal strata, is abundant in the neighborhood of the localities where the gold is ound. Gold is here, as elsewhere, found associated with black sand.

From forty to fifty years ago salt was made at four different places in the county. It has been so long ago that it has almost become traditional that salt was once produced here. A few of the older inhabitants, who were then

very young, remember the fact, but I have yet found no one who can tell me what amount was made, or how many gallons of the water it took to make a bushel of salt. Three of the salt wells were on Salt creek, two on the farm of George and David Hawkins, section 4, township 11, range 12 east, and one on the farm of Alexander Hawkins, of the same section. The latter is the well at which the largest amount of salt was made. The fourth well was on Pipe creek, section 8, township 10, range 13 east, northeast quarter, in Butler township. These wells are all situated in the blue limestone and clay marls of the Lower Silurian group. On the hills near them is found the magnesian and bituminous nodular series, which, as I have before stated, occupy but a very few feet in perpendicular height, and belong to the Upper Silurian. It is not probable that the water of these wells is of such a character, or in quantities sufficient to render the working of them profitable.

Many people have an idea that coal may be found in Franklin county, and it has heretofore been impossible to convince them that there is none. Next in importance to knowing what a district of country does contain, is a knowledge of what it does not contain. If I could convince those persons who believe in its existence here, that it does not belong to our formation, and that any search for it will be utterly hopeless, I should feel that some good had been accomplished.
The semi-crystalline rocks of the upper and lower Silurian system were formed in the early ages of the world's history, when there was no vegetation upon the earth, except a very few and widely separated sea-weeds. Coal is universally admitted to be of vegetable origin, and its immense quantity points to a period for its formation, when the earth was densely covered with vegetation, tropical in character, such as tree ferns, gigantic rushes, etc., similar to those now found in some parts of Central and South America. The rocks of Franklin, and adjoining counties, were

deposited at a period long anterior to that in which coal was formed, and long before the earth was prepared to produce land plants, except a few, of the most insignificant character -- this being the fact, it was impossible that coal could have been formed here at that early period. This should be sufficient to convince every one that it need not be sought for in this county. Fragments of black bituminous shale, which will burn feebly, are occasionally found here. This, no doubt, has been the cause of misleading people as to the existence of coal in this locality.

Clay of a good quality for the manufacture of bricks is found in every part of the county. They are made on the uplands of the fine-grained yellow and whitish clay of first rate quality. Many are also made near Brookville, from the arenaceous loam of the river bottom lands, of very good quality, but occasionally contain fragments of lime, which slacks after exposure of the brick to the air, causing them to break, and rendering them unfit for outer walls. With care to exclude the lime, these bricks are as good, if not better, than those made from the upland clays.
Stone, known usually as the "blue Cincinnati limestone," is abundant everywhere, and is the surface-rock, as has been said elsewhere, in the southeastern third of the county. It is a valuable and very durable stone, but, unfortunately, there are but few strata, of sufficient firmness to work well, which exceed six inches in thickness. The thinner layers are used in walling cellars, and all other rough work where beauty is not essential. Many of the thicker strata are so shelly, and composed of broken corals and fossil shells, that they are not suited to ordinary stonework. Every stone which is sufficiently firm to bear hammer-dressing, may be relied upon as being sufficently durable for any description of masonry. The thin strata are extensively used for flagging the sidewalks in the town, and have proved to be durable, and will, no doubt, outlast several successive pavements of brick.

The localites where this rock is found are so numerous, and so generally known, that to point them out would be superfluous. North of Brookville, one mile and a half in a direct line, the rock of which we have been speaking disappears under a stratum of (probably) magnesian limestone, which varies from six to twenty inches in thickness. This stone is extensively used for heavy masonry, and range-work of various kinds; its qualities have been mentioned in a former part of this report, and need not be repeated here. It is extensively quarried by Mr. Schrichte, on the south-east quarter of section 17, town 9, range 2 west; also an the lands of Jane McCarty, sections 8 and 9; on W. W. Butler's, section 8; on the farm of W. J. Peck, sections 13 and 14; on Josiah Allen's, and James Gavin's section 15; on the lands of John Skinner, Wm. Brier, and Samuel Shepperd, section 7; William Frank's, section 18; on lands of Z. B. Reed and J. P. Shiltz, sections 17 and 18; also on the lands of C. T. Gordon, section 32; and those of M. H. Gordon, section 30, town 12 north, range 13 east. It is also found on H. H. Seal's farm, section 36, town 10, range 2 west. South of Brookville it is found on the lands of Hon. A. B. Line, J. H. Lanning and John Althero [should read: Alther] -- all in section 28, town 11 north, range 13 east; also on lands of E. Krause and P. Conrad, section 17, town 10 north, range 13 east. It is found in and around the town of Oldenburg, in great abundance, section 4, town 10 north, range 12 east; also on H. Schwegmann's farm, section 1, same town.
Besides the localities already mentioned, there are many others which might be named; but to enumerate them all would render this report tedious and unnecessarily long.
The most valuable building-stone in the county, or probably in the State, is found in Laurel and Posey townships. It is of the same character, and belongs to the same formation as the Dayton stone so extensively used in Cincinnati and other places, and the same as that found at Greensburg and St. Paul. This group has generally been referred to the Niagara series, and probably correctly so,

S. G. R. -- 13.

but I am of opinion that the upper strata, at least, belong to the Devonian formation. The few fossils I have been able to find in them (the upper members) are referable, in my opinion, to that group. Let this be as it may, the rocks are without doubt of great value as a building material, and when they come to be generally known will be extensively used.
Two miles north-west of Laurel, D. H. Mook owns a valuable quarry, which has been extensively worked. The strata are generally blue, especially the lower series, are hard, easily worked to a fine edge, are durable, and may be obtained of any required size or thickness. It is situated on the south-east quarter of section 5, town 12 north, range 12 east. Immediately west, in the same section, there is a fine outcrop of the same rock upon the land of Wm. Depperman; this has not been worked to the same extent as Mook's, but it contains a vast amount of valuable material.
On section 17, town 12 north, range 12 east, Messrs. Kemble & Payne own a quarry of very fine quality of stone. In this quarry the upper members are cream-colored cherty limestone. Stone of any desirable thickness may be obtained there.
John H. Faurot has a fine quarry on the southwest quarter of section 18, town 12, range 12; it has been but little worked. James Murphy also has a fine quarry in the same section. Thomas B. and William D. Adams, whose farm is on section 1, town 12, range 11 east, have a good quarry of the same character of stone. It is upon this farm where gold has been found in greater quantity than in any other locality in the neighborhood.
To these gentlemen, and especially to Thomas B. Adams, Esq., I am greatly indebted for assistance in prosecuting my examinations in that section of the county; and to the Rev. Wm. B. Adams my acknowledgments are due for hospitable treatment and entertainment at his residence.
Martha Plow owns a quarry in section 6, town 12, range

12, which promises well, but has not been worked to any considerable extent. J. A. Derbyshire has a fine quarry on section 20, town 12, range 12, and G. W. Kimble another in section 19.
Alfred Deter has, adjoining the village of Bulltown, in Posey township, a good quarry in section 13, town 12, range 11 east. This is the most western quarry I have seen.
One of the finest quarries in this formation belongs to Jesse Cloud, and is situate in the south-west quarter of section 7, town 12 north, range 12 east. The strata vary in thickness from two inches to ten. The thin flags are yellow, very hard, and upon being struck with a hammer give out a clear sharp ring, similar to glass; they are very durable, notwithstanding their argillaceous character.
Flagging, or stone for any other purpose, may be obtained here, or at any of the neighboring quarries, of uniform thickness and of any dimensions.
Besides these quarries there are a number of others in the vicinity which might be mentioned, but I deem it unnecessary to name them all, as they may be found in a belt two and a half miles in width by five or six in length.

Franklin county was originally covered with a magnificent forest, comprising most of the hard timber trees common to the latitude. A little more than one-half of all the lands have been cleared, and are now under cultivation; and in the remaining half a large amount of the best timber has been sawed into lumber or made into staves, so that good timber in the county is comparatively scarce, and is becoming more so every day.
The principal timber trees are:
White oak (Quercus alba). This is, and always was, the most abundant tree in the county.
Burr oak (Quercus macrocarpa). Found in various parts of the county, but nowhere abundant.
Chestnut oak (Quercus Castanea). Two miles north of Brookville, upon a poor point, there is a grove of about

thirty chestnut-oak trees. These are all I have ever seen in Southeastern Indiana.
Red oak (Quercus rubra). Very common.
Black oak (Quercus tinctoria). Common upon the hills.
Red beech (Fagus ferruginea)), and white beech (Fagus Sylvestris). The most numerous of all trees except white oak.
Shellbark hickory (Carya alba). Very abundant.
Thick shellbark (Carya sulcata). Quite common.
Pig-nut hickory (Carya glabra). Common.
White ash (Fraxinum Americana). A very common and valuable timber tree.
Blue ash (Fraxinum quadrangulata). Rather abundant, and the most valuable of all ash timber.
Hoop ash (Celtis Mississippiensis), and hackberry (Celtis occidentalis). Quite common, the latter tree the most numerous.
Sycamore (Platanus occidentalis). Plentiful along the borders of all our streams.
Butternut (Juglans Cinerea). Quite common.
Poplar (Liriodendron tulipifera). One very abundant, now becoming scarce.
Black walnut (Juglans nigra). Formerly abundant, but now becoming scarce.
Sugar maple (Acer saccharinum). Abundant.
White maple (Acer dasycarpum). Common.
Red or swamp maple (Acer rubrum). Common.
Wild cherry (Cerasus Virginiana). Not abundant.
Sweet gum (Liquidamber Styraciflua). Common in the southern part of the county; occasionally found in northeast part.
Cottonwood (Populus angulata). Quite common along our streams.
Linden-basswood (Tilia Americana). Very common.
Buckeye (Æscules glabra). Very abundant.
Coffee-nut (Gymnocladus Canadensis). Not very abundant.
Honey locust (Gleditschia triacanthos). Quite common.

Gum (Nyssa uniflora). Common.
Slippery elm (Ulmus fulva). Common.
White elm (Ulmus Americana). Abundant.
Mulberry (Morus rubra). Rather abundant.
Red cedar (Juniperus Virginiana). A few small groves in the county.
In addition to the timber trees above names there are many smaller varieties, but as they are seldom used for building or mechanical purposes I have thought it unnecessary to name them.

Our streams do not furnish, upon the average, more than one-third the amount of water they did thirty or forty years ago. There were then many water-mills upon the small tributaries of Whitewater that are now abandoned on account of the failure of water. This failure is caused by the destruction of the forests, and by draining the flat uplands. Whilst the surface was covered with trees, brush and leaves, the water, after rains, was prevented from flowing rapidly into the streams, so that the rises were gradual, but since the side-hills have been cleared and set in grass, and the level lands drained, the water rushes rapidly into the streams, causing great floods, which wash the banks, overflow many of the bottoms, and as quickly subside, leaving a deficiency of water as compared with former years. These floods have greatly marred the beauty of the river by washing away the banks, and leaving great accumulations of gravel and sand in its widened bed. Formerly the stream was bordered by trees, and the water was so transparent in the fall and winter that the bottom could be seen at a depth of twenty feet. It is still a very clear stream, but by no means equal to what it was formerly. The fall upon the average is six feet to the mile -- some places more, some less -- but everywhere ample power may be had to propel almost any amount of machinery.
The Whitewate canal, now abandoned for purposes of navigation, is still used for hydraulic purposes, and fur-

nishes a very large amount of valuable water-power which is used to some extent, but there are still a number of locks unoccupied which are capable of furnishing almost any necessary amount of power.

There are few earth-works, except mounds, found in this county. Three miles north of Brookville, and immediately west of the East fork, upon the top of a hill near three hundred and fifty feet high, there is a semicircular wall of earth three hundred yards in length. It is built across a narrow ridge which is formed by two deep ravines, one on the south, the other on the north, which, with the river on the east, isolate the flat on top of the hill (containing fifteen or twenty acres,) from the level country to the west, and was built, probably, to protect the inhabitants from any enemy approaching from that direction.
There are quite a number of earthen mounds in the county, but none of large size; I have seen none more than ten or twelve feet high; many of them are not above three or four feet in height. Those on the highlands bordering the river are uniformly upon the highest places, and always in view of the river and its valley.
These mounds are so situated with reference to each other that a person standing on a mound in the most northern part of the county, overlooking the valley of the river, could see the next mound below him, and from the second the third was in view, and so with all the others, thus forming a chain of observatories, from which the approach of an enemy could be telegraphed with great celerity from one to the other, either by smoke or some other intelligible signal. Though these mounds were used as burial places, I have no doubt they were also used as signal posts; and very probably the signals were made by fire, for the clay of which they are composed in some cases has been burned to near the color of common brick.
The Mound Builders were a people posssessing rare good taste, which is evidenced by the situation of their mounds.

These were always built in picturesque positions -- either on the highest grounds, or, if in the valleys, upon the edges of the highest river terraces, overlooking the water and the lower portions of the valley.
Two miles below Brookville, upon the farm of Mr. Roberts, there are, within the distance of two furlongs, upon the edge of the highest river terrace, nine small mounds. Besides these nine, which appear to have been completed, there is one barely commenced and abandoned. The commencement was made by digging up the earth to the depth of about twelve inches, which was then thrown out from the center and heaped up around the circumference, forming a circle within which the superstructure was to be ercted, and which has very much the appearance of a shallow basin. It was in these basins that the dead were burned, or rather partly burned, for they were not usually entirely consumed. Not many mounds in this neighborhood have been thoroughly explored; and, in such as have, few contain anything more than bones and charcoal. In two of them bracelets of copper were found, and, in some others, a pipe or two; one of these, found in a mound eight miles below Brookville, was said, by those who found it, still to have retained the scent of tobacco; if this be true, it conclusively proves that these people used tobacco as well as their successors, the modern Indians. There are upon many of the high points mounds of stone, which have been erected by a different people from the Mound Builders. These contain vast quantities of human bones, both of adults and children, as well as the bones of squirrels, skunks, and other small animals. These were not probably the burial places for the dead, but a collection of their bones brought together from many places for final sepulture.

Parts of skeletons of three mastodons (mastodon maximus) have been exhumed in the neighborhood of Brookville; one of them about a mile below, and the other three and a half miles; both found among the gravel in the up-

per river terrace, some eight or nine feet below the surface. This conclusively proves that these animals existed previously, if not at the time, of the formation of the terraces. They were most probably destroyed by the flood which transported the drift. The third skeleton was found three and a half miles north-east of Brookville, on the farm of Mr. David Barnard, in a piece of marshy ground which he was ditching. A tooth or two, and some other bones of the mammoth (Elephas primigenius) were found some years ago in Saltcreek township; one of the grinders, which I once had in my possession, was thirteen inches wide, six inches deep, and four inches thick, and weighed, when found, fourteen pounds, but after being thoroughly dried weighed but eleven. Only about half the tooth had been used in mastication, the balance not having, at the death of the animal, appeared above the integuments of the jaw.

There is considerable variety in the soil of Franklin county. The Whitewater bottoms are, or at least once were, as productive lands as could be found anywhere; they contain a large per cent. of vegetable matter, or humus, with clay, sand and lime -- in fact all the elements of fertility. Some of these lands have produced pretty fair crops of corn for fifty successive years without the use of any kind of manures. This constant cropping in corn, however, is perceptibly exhausting them, and points out the necessity of a rotation in crops, and the application of fertilizers, if we expect them to maintain their fertility.
Forty years ago wheat could not be profitably produced in the alluvial bottoms on account of the great amount of vegetable matter which the soil contained. This has to a considerable extent been exhausted by the growing of corn and these lands now produce good crops of wheat. In the eastern part of the county, Bath, Springfield, and Whitewater townships, there is a large amount of level and very productive land. Many parts of this section were formerly considered to be of little value on account of their swampy

character, but, since they have been cleared and drained, hey are considered, taken all in all, to be the most desirable lands we have. The soil is largely composed of vegetable matter with a subsoil of yellow clay.
I will forward a specimen of the soil from Springfield township, which will give you an idea of the character of the soil in that section. Lands there range from forty to eighty dollars per acre.
In Blooming Grove township the soil is gray, and in many cases nearly white, with a yellow argillaceous subsoil found at about fifteen inches below the surface. This clay, when brought up and mixed with the superficial soil greatly enhances its productiveness. I have no doubt that if these lands could be subsoiled, and this clay mixed with the soil, the result would be a great improvement in their productiveness.
In the southern part of the county the soil is also grayish, with a subsoil of arenaceous yellow clay. This soil is not so productive as that in some other parts of the county, but produces fine apples, peaches, and other fruits. In the western part of the county, the soil is gray, with a subsoil of ferruginous-colored clay. This clay abounds in fragments of hornstone. The soil is more productive than its appearance would lead us to expect.
In the surface diluvial soils I have been unable anywhere to find even a trace of lime. None of them effervesce in the slightest degree with acids. If they ever contained lime (which will admit of doubt), it has been leached out by the constant percolation of water during the past ages. I have found it a hard matter to convince our farmers that their lands contain no lime, and in many cases have entirely failed to do so.
I have no doubt that lime could be beneficially applied to these lands, provided the precaution be taken at the same time to apply manure, muck, or to plow in a crop of green clover.
Our farmers are generally well situated, but little in debt; most of them have good houses, and many even

elegant residences. There is a great amount of substantial comfort and wealth among them. The county is remarkably healthy, and nothing seems to be wanting that is necessary to render them happy and contented.

Interstratifed with the "Cliff" rock, there are strata of a crumbling impure limestone, having every external appearance of the Louisville cement rock. It has not been tested, ut there can be but little doubt that it will prove to be of this character. I have sent specimens to Mr. Speed, of the Louisville Cement Co., to be tested, but as yet have not heard the result.

Assistant Geologist.
Brookville, Ind., Nov. 22, 1869.

1869 Table of Contents

Geology Library, Indiana University, Bloomington