Memorial and Biographical History of Dallas County, Texas. Page: 132 of 1,110
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HISTORY OF DALLAS COUTNTY.
of the country. In fact it is the great chalky
region of the United States.
. The rocks originated as sediments of the
Atlantic ocean, laid down with great unifortnity
during two of the long epochs of
subsidence and emergence when the waters
covered this region many hundred fathoms
deep. These ancient sediments are now more
or less consolidated and elevated into a fertile
land, which is decomposing under atmospheric
conditions into soils and debris, and in
turn being slowly transported to the ocean,
where it will make other rock sheets. They
now occur in regular sheets or strata, dipping
beneath each other toward the sea, while the
projecting western edges, each of which
weathers into and imparts its individuality
to its own peculiar belt of country, outcrops
in long, narrow belts, sub-parallel to the
present ocean outline. Thus it is that as one
proceeds inland from the coast he constantly
crosses successively lower and lower sheets of
these formations. The oldest, or lowest, in
a geological sense, of these outcrops, forms
the Upper Cross Timbers, those above these
make the Grand Prairie, the next sheet forms
the Lower Cross Timbers, and the next the
Black Prairie, etc. Each of these weathers into
a characteristic soil, which in its turn is adapted
to a peculiar agriculture. Each, too, has its own
water conditions and other features of economic
value. Some of these rock sheets, like the Upper
Cross Timber country, may be comparatively
unfertile in the region of outcrop, yet
they may serve to carry the rain which falls
upon the thirsty sands far beneath the adjacent
country, where by artesian borings it becomes
an invaluable source of water supply for a distant
and more fertile region.
The Cretaceous country of Texas, as a
whole, like the system of rocks of which the
surface is composed, is separable into two
great divisions, each of which in turn is subdivided
still further. These two regions are
known as the Black Prairie and Grand (or
Fort Worth) Prairie regions, each of which
includes in its western border, north of the
Brazos, an elongated strip of timber known
as the Lower and Upper 'Cross Timbers,
THE BLACK PRAIRIE REGION
occupies an elongated area extending the
length of the State from Red river to the Rio
Grande. The eastern border of the Black
Prairie is approximately the southwestern
termination of the great Atlantic timber belt.
The Missouri Pacific and the International
railroads from Denison to San Antonio approximately
mark the western edge. A little
south of the center, along the Colorado river,
from Austin eastward to the Travis county
line near Webberville, the Black Prairie is
restricted to its narrowest limits. Westward
this prairie is succeeded by a region of some
superficial resemblance to it which on closer
study is found to differ in all essential
points. This is the Grand, or Fort Worth,
Prairie, or "hard-lime-rock region."
The so-called mountains west of Austin
are the remains of the Grand Prairie. In
general, the Black Prairie region consists of
a level plain, imperceptibly sloping to the
southeast, varied only by gentle undulations
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Lewis Publishing Company. Memorial and Biographical History of Dallas County, Texas., book, 1892; Chicago, Illinois. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth20932/m1/132/: accessed April 29, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Dallas Public Library.