KGS Home General Info Index Page News Releases

News Release, Kansas Geological Survey, June 28, 2000

New Geologic Map of Woodson County Available

LAWRENCE--A new map that shows the geology at the surface of Woodson County is now available from the Kansas Geological Survey, based at the University of Kansas.

The full-color map, which shows the type and age of rocks at the surface, was developed by Survey geologist Daniel Merriam.

In addition to the county's geology, the map shows roads, railroads, quarries, streams, lakes, and other features. Because geologic maps show the rock formations likely to be encountered in a given location, they are useful in construction, in understanding soils and agriculture, in searching for water and mineral deposits, and in a variety of engineering and environmental uses.

Most of the county is part of the Osage Cuestas region, an area of limestones and shales. These rocks were deposited during the Pennsylvanian Period of geologic history, about 300 million years ago.

In addition, much younger sands, gravels, and other geologic materials were deposited along the rivers and streams in the region, particularly along the Neosho River and Owl Creek.

One notable geologic feature in southern Woodson County is an area of once-molten igenous rock that crops out at the surface. These igneous rocks are unusual because nearly all of the rocks at the surface of Kansas are sedimentary rocks, such as limestones and shales.

This igneous rock, called lamproite, probably exploded to the surface about 90 million years ago. The lamproite pushed up a dome of rock at the surface near the small town of Rose. Another dome occurs north of Buffalo in Wilson and Woodson counties, where the lamproite is mined and used as an additive in livestock feed.

The map is drawn at a scale of 1:50,000, so that one inch on the map equals about 3/4 mile of actual distance. The map measures about 42 by 30 inches.

Copies of the new map are available from the Kansas Geological Survey, 1930 Constant Ave., Lawrence, KS 66047 (or phone 785-864-3965). The cost is $15.00, plus $5.00 for handling. Kansas residents should add 6.9% sales tax. More information about the maps and other Survey products is available at the Survey's web site (

Story by Rex Buchanan, (785) 864-2106
for more information, contact Daniel Merriam, 785-864-2127
For an online geologic map of this county, please visit our Woodson County geologic map web page.
Kansas Geological Survey, Publications and Public Affairs