Cheltenham Clay Member

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Lithostratigraphy: Kewanee Group >>Spoon Formation >>Cheltenham Clay Member
Chronostratigraphy: Paleozoic Erathem >>Pennsylvanian Subsystem >>Desmoinesian Series
Allostratigraphy: Absaroka Sequence

Primary source

Willman, H. B., Elwood Atherton, T. C. Buschbach, Charles Collinson, John C. Frye, M. E. Hopkins, Jerry A. Lineback, and Jack A. Simon, 1975, Handbook of Illinois Stratigraphy: Illinois State Geological Survey Bulletin 95, 261 p.

Contributing author(s)

M. E. Hopkins and J. A. Simon


Original description

The Cheltenham Clay Member of the Spoon Formation (Wheeler, 1896, p. 247; White, 1909, p. 293).


Named for the Cheltenham district in the southern part of St. Louis, Missouri.

Other names


In Illinois, the name is applied locally to a complex claystone member that results from the thinning out of many units and the merging of several underclay units.

Type section

Type location

Type author(s)

Type status

Reference section

Reference location

Reference author(s)

Reference status

Stratigraphic relationships

The stratigraphic interval occupied by this member varies. The youngest deposits are at or immediately below the underclay of the Colchester (No. 2) Coal and the oldest are near the base of the underclay below the Brush (New Burnside) Coal.

Extent and thickness

The Cheltenham is developed primarily in northern, western, and southwestern Illinois, areas where the Pennsylvanian section below the Colchester Coal is relatively thin.





Well log characteristics


Age and correlation

The Cheltenham Clay Member in Illinois is considered to be part of the Desmoinesian Series, but in Missouri similar deposits (Cheltenham Formation) are considered part of the Atokan Series (Howe and Koenig, 1961).

Environments of deposition

Economic importance



HOWE, W. B., and J . W. KOENIG, 1961, Stratigraphic succession in Missouri: Missouri Geological Survey, v. 40, 185 p.
WHEELER, H. A., 1896, Clay deposits: Missouri Geological Survey, v. 11, 1st Series, 622 p.
WHITE, DAVID, 1909, Paleobotanical work in Illinois in 1908: Illinois State Geological Survey Bulletin 14, p. 293-295.

ISGS Codes

Stratigraphic Code Geo Unit Designation