The Land is Formed

1.1 billion years ago, the collisions of continental pieces affecting the Appalachians begin.

500 milllion years ago/end of Cambrian (Paleozoic) … shallow sea covered essentially all of West Virginia. Most rocks in the Appalachians laid in horizontal layers as sediment and marine deposits at edge of continent. Ancestral riverbeds of Potomac and Cacapon laid down.

400 million years ago (Paleozoic) continental collisions squished the coastal plane into giant folds creating mountains as high as a mile in this area. Midway through, sea begins retreating westward.

330 million years ago sea intrudes again.

310 million — end of Mississippean. Early mountains in area of West Virginia are subject to erosions and worn down. Sandstone laid down.

270-225 million — Permian (end Paleozoic) Appalachian Orogeny began; West Virginia uplifted, sediment depositing ceases and erosion takes place. Much folding and thrust faulting in eastern part of state — SPRINGS FORMED. Mesozoic. Famous fold belts of Appalachians.

200 million — Supercontinent splits and Atlantic Ocean is formed.

50 million — Andes, Himalayas and Alps formed.