Frequently Asked Questions
What was "Glacial Lake Monongahela?"
Carbon-14 dates of about 22,000, 23,000, and 39,000 years old, all from plant
matter found in lake sediments near Morgantown, indicate that Glacial Lake Monongahela
was in existence during the Wisconsinan glacial stage. Some sediments are reversely
magnetized in an early stand of the lake and therefore are older than 780,000 years BP
(before the present)! Evidence exists suggesting that a high stand of the lake overflowed,
perhaps at several places. The dominant outlet for a considerable period of time was along
the Doddridge-Harrison County line just west of Salem, and the water flowed down the
valley of Middle Island Creek. At some time during the multiple Pleistocene glaciations, a
divide just south of New Martinsville was reduced and the present path of the Ohio River
Page last revised: November 11, 2005
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