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Special Report on Coal

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Volume III

Special Report on Coal

by Erasmus Haworth assisted by W. R. Crane

Cover of the book; red-brown cloth with gold imprinting of seal on cover and title on binding.

Originally published in 1898 as University Geological Survey of Kansas Volume 3. This is, in general, the original text as published. The information has not been updated. An Acrobat PDF version (106.3 MB) is also available.

Letter of Transmittal

Dr. F. H. Snow, Chancellor of the University of Kansas:

SIR—I have the honor to submit to you herewith a special report on Kansas Coals prepared by the Department of Physical Geology and Mineralogy of the University. This report will constitute Volume III of the reports of the University Geological Survey of Kansas.

Yours most respectfully,

Erasmus Haworth
Department of Physical Geology and Mineralogy,
University of Kansas, July 1, 1898


The preparation of the following report on the Coals of Kansas has been done chiefly by the writer and Mr. W. R. Crane, although in the true sense of the term almost all the investigations conducted in the Coal Measures of Kansas during the last five years have contributed directly or indirectly to the information herein expressed.

Such a report on the Coals of the state could not be made until the detailed stratigraphy was well worked out. A large part of our time has therefore been devoted to the detailed stratigraphy of the eastern part of the state. This was partly described in Volume I, published early in 1896. The following descriptions of the general stratigraphy of the Coal Measures are based necessarily on the similar descriptions in Volume I.

During the summer of 1897 the writer was again assisted by Dr. George I. Adams, by the Rev. John Bennett, and by Mr. W. E. Ringle, all of whom devoted their entire time to stratigraphic work. Doctor Adams confined his labors to the Coal Measures in the southern part of the state, reaching north approximately to a line trending east and west through Fort Scott and Iola. Mr. Bennett traced in detail the outcroppings of the several limestone systems north ward of this line and south of the Kansas river. Mr. Ringle assisted Doctor Adams.

After the field season closed Doctor Adams likewise was of great assistance in the drafting room in reducing the substance of his summer's work to drawings, in the preparation of geologic sections, geologic maps, etc. It was with regret on the part of the writer that he did not prepare the manuscript in full for the stratigraphy of the part of the state covered by his field work, but at his own request he was excused from the same.

It is a matter of great satisfaction, and at the same time of no little surprise, to be able to state that the outlines of the stratigraphy of eastern Kansas, as given in Volume I, are substantially correct. The work for that volume was done hurriedly and the report was looked upon as a mere reconnaissance. We are now able to make a more detailed report, and one which may carry with it greater authority, on account of its being based upon more detailed and accurate field work. The only positive errors found in previous work are two: The Altamont limestone given in Volume I as the lower member of the Erie system is now known to be the eight-foot limestone mentioned by Bennett on page 94 of Volume I, and shown in Plate IV; and the Carlyle of Volume I, according to the conclusions reached by Mr. Bennett, is the same as the Garnett limestone. These two errors are of little importance excepting from the perturbations they cause in nomenclature. The name Altamont can be retained, as Bennett gave no name to the eight-foot system in his description, but either the name Carlyle or Garnett must be discontinued as they refer to the same article. On account of the name Garnett having been used so much more extensively than Carlyle the latter will be dropped, as explained in detail in the proper place in this report.

Mr. Crane's work in connection with this report has been confined principally to an investigation of the chemical and physical properties of the coals, and to a detailed study of mining machinery and mining methods. All the analyses and determinations of heating properties given in the following tables were made by him, excepting the small number which are properly credited to others. Likewise the pen and ink drawings used in his part of the report to illustrate machinery and methods are all the work of his hand. The character of his work can be judged of by the readers. It may not be out of place, however, to add that the greater part of his analytical work was done wholly without any expense of any kind to the state, and that the remainder was done at such nominal expense that it is almost without a parallel in the history of public investigations of this kind for state purposes.

Erasmus Haworth
University of Kansas, Lawrence, July 1, 1898

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Kansas Geological Survey, Geology
Placed on web Sept. 22, 2018; originally published 1898.
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