The Ozark Mountains

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  • Topic: Missouri, The Ozarks, Arkansas
  • Pages : 2 (518 words )
  • Download(s) : 560
  • Published : April 9, 2011
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The Ozarks, also known as the Ozark Mountains, is a “physiographic, geologic, and cultural highland region of the central United States which covers much of the southern half of Missouri and an extensive area of northwest Arkansas.” The region extends to the west into southeast Kansas and northeastern Oklahoma. While the region is referred to as the Ozark Mountains, it is actually a “high and deeply dissected” plateau. The Ozark Mountains consist of three sections: the Salem Plateau, the Springfield Plateau, and the Boston Mountains. The topography is mostly “gently rolling” with the exception of the Boston Mountains along the escarpments separating the Salem and Springfield Plateaus, and the Saint Francois Range where it is rugged. The Saint Francois Mountain Range rises above the Ozark Mountains and is the geological cause of the highland dome. The volcanic and igneous rocks of the Saint Francois Mountains are the remains of a Precambrian Mountain range. The core of the mountain range once existed as an island in the Paleozoic seas. Reef complexes occur in sedimentary layers surrounding this ancient island. These “flanking reefs” were points of concentration for later ore bearing fluids which formed the rich lead-zinc ores that have been mined in the area. The Saint Francois Range is the core of the Ozarks, and was formed by volcanic activity as opposed to erosion. The igneous and volcanic rocks extend at depth under the relatively “thin veneer of Paleozoic sedimentary rocks” and form the basal crust of the entire region. Much of the area supports dairy farming and beef cattle ranching, and poultry farming is also on the rise in Oklahoma and Arkansas. In the Oklahoma portion of the Ozarks, oil exploration and extraction takes place. Logging of timber has also been an important economic activity for quite some time. The Ozarks also consist of a region of people with a distinct “culture, architecture, and dialect” that is shared by the people that live in the...
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