Re: Four Rivers Revisited

Glenn R. Morton (
Fri, 14 May 1999 17:47:07 -0500

I don't get much opportunity to participate now adays, but Allen Roy's
assertion made me want to get involved. Chuck Vandergraaf was correct
that Allen wanted someone to educate him so I will volunteer. Allen

>I have been proposing a catastrophe hypothesis. Shimmrich said that >it won't work because certain scientific inquiries in Diagenesis. He >did not elaborate. I
>asked to know how he thought Diagenesis
>disproved my hypothesis. I have now gotten some resource books on
>Diagenesis and have not yet seen anything which would rule out >catastrophic deposition
>followed by litification giving what we now see in the rocks.

Allen, you haven't done much research on this issue at all. I am going
to use C. H. Moore's Carbonate Diagenesis and Porosity, Developments in
Sedimentology 46, New York, Elsevier, 1989. Clyde Moore lead me on my
first Carbonate field trip in 1984 and after seeing the data and rock
outcrops he showed us, I knew that the Global flood couldn't be real
without some serious miracles.

Here is some of the diagenetic data that destroys a catastrophist view.
On Page 55 Moore shows some photomicrographs of some limestone taken
from Nancy field, at 13550' from Mississippi. The limestone grains are
spherical being pelletic. This means that the grain is formed of
concentric layers deposited on the outside of the pellet. As the grain
rolls around in lime saturated waters, algae deposits a tiny layer of
lime on the upward side. Then the waves roll the grain to another
position and the layer of lime is deposited again on the upward side,
but it is now not in the same rotational position as before. Then the
pellets became buried.

A tiny layer of calcite was deposited around the grain with a radial
pattern. This rimming calcite ring was deposited prior to compaction of
the rock because parts of it are broken off or are hanging from one edge
like a peel of an orange that has been partially removed. After that a
new poikilotopic calcite cement was deposited on top of this. The
pattern and mineral crystal structure is such to show that these were
deposited from subsurface waters at a later time than the earlier

On page 93 we find one of the most fascinating diagenetic events that
destroys catastrophic deposition of limestone--clionid sponges. The
reason you can walk in the ocean without walking only on the shells of
dead shellfish is thanks to clionid sponges. These little critters eat
shells and other forms of limestone. In fact, more than 50% of reef rock
is eaten and then replaced by limestone depositional processes other
than coral growth.(p. 92) Often you will find clionid borings cutting
across grains, cutting across rimming calcites, cutting across late
cementation. because these clionids can't eat what isn't there, the fact
that they cross cut everything, means that they are one of the last
events in the diagenetic history in rocks like these. They also can't
live deep in the rock record and must have oxygen. Thus, they can't
have been buried deeply by the flood and still eat limestone! There
wouldn't be enough oxygen for them. Clionids are found in almost all
limestone rocks merrily eating their way through limestone.

Have you ever noticed the small sag in water held in a straw? That
little curve is a meniscus. Water in small confined areas always
produces a meniscus surface due to surface tension. When the water is
confined in a beach sand which is above the water table, it forms
meniscii between all sand grains. If the water contains some limestone,
then when the water dries, the limestone is deposited with a meniscal
shape to it between the sand grains. We commonly find meniscus-shaped
limestone deposited between sand grains or pelletoids of a lime sand. In
order for there to be enough limestone to form the meniscus hundreds of
cycles of wetting then drying must have occurred. You can't get a solid
meniscus with only one wetting. Water doesn't contain enough limestone
in solution. So on page 180 of that book Moore shows pictures of a
meniscus-type calcite cement. Meniscii can not form underwater, which
is where they would be if your global flood was correct and these things
were being deposited then. Meniscii form only at a liquid/air interface
(at least in the geological context that is the only place they form).

ON page 249 he shows another diagenetic phenomenon. When lime grains
come into contact and the rock has begun to compact, the pressure at the
point of contact is great and this causes the two grains to dissolve at
that site so that a greater surface areas supports the pressure. This
pressure solution can not occur rapidly. It takes time for water to be
able to carry off the limestone.

On page 263 he shows a limestone that had a late pore fill with bitumen
and then anhydrite filled the pores left by some dissolved lime grains.
After that a poikilotopic calcite was deposited at the end of the
diagenesis. Since anhydrite can't be deposited under water, and cant be
deposited unless it is hot, the bitumen and the anhydrite had to be in
place before the rock was buried very far. Then later, when the rock
was buried under the water table the poikilotopic calcite was deposited.
This can't happen in a flood.

No, Allen, you have not studied this area and after perusing, maybe one
article or two you think you see no problems. If you really knew this
area, you would be horrified. I wish I were as blind as you. Life was a
lot simpler before I knew geology. I believed in a global flood.


Foundation, Fall and Flood Adam, Apes and Anthropology