Those of you who have been reading too many dinosaur books, may immediately think of gore as a bloody mess. But gore has meanings related to land surveying, territory, or cloth.

As the OED defines one aspect of gore:

c. A small strip or tract of land lying between larger divisions. Chiefly U.S.

1887 G. W. Sears Forest Runes p. vii, What New Englanders call a ‘gore’,—a triangular strip of land that gets left out somehow when the towns are surveyed.

Rocks, Landscapes, National Parks of Queensland

We recently acquired several geological guides for the Rocks, Landscapes, and National Parks of Queensland, Australia.

Each guidebook gives the geological origins and episodes of its particular region and then groups the parks by similar geological features. For example, Central Queensland parks are organized by limestones, meta-sediments, violent volcanoes, granites, sandstone belts, and sunken basins. With sketches, photographs, maps, and walking tours, these guidebooks are useful for real hiking trips and for trips of the imagination for those of us who have never been to Australia but have cataloged hundreds of books about its geology.

Noosa National Park, Queensland, Australia:

Return from Oz

Gyttja conditions prevailed

“Gyttja conditions prevailed, thus prompting the formation of rich nodular limestone.”–Bechstädt, Brandner.

According to the OED, gyttja is a Swedish word referring to mud or ooze. Here’s the geological definition:

gyttja, n.- A sediment which is typically black, rich in organic matter, and deposited in productive lakes.

Bechstädt, Thilo, and Rainer Brandner. Das Anis zwischen St. Vigil und dem Höhlensteintal (Pragser- und Olanger Dolomiten, Südtirol). Innsbruck, Austria: [Universität Innsbruck], 1970.

QE 344 A19

Ever wonder what was at call number QE 344 A19? Wonder no more! The Publication series of the Geological Survey of Queensland was cataloged at QE 344 A19. The QE represents the Library of Congress  Subject Geology, while the 344 is the geographical subdivision Queensland, Australia.

So now you may be wondering why you don’t see these publications in our stacks. It’s because we moved them into the Library Storage Facility (LSF). We recently received a massive gift of geological materials and have been madly processing, cataloging, and moving some materials in to the stacks and out to LSF to make room for even more books and maps.


Earth’s Art : Celebrating the Centennial of the Bureau of Economic Geology

The Bureau of Economic Geology may be the State Geological Survey of Texas, but our researchers investigate the world and beyond!

Laubach, Stephen E., and Scott W. Tinker. Earth’s Art: Celebrating the Centennial of the Bureau of Economic Geology, 1909-2009. [Austin, Tex.]: University of Texas at Austin, Bureau of Economic Geology, 2009.

Earth's Art

Extended hours for Finals : December 7 – 18, 2012

Extended hours:

Friday, December 7, 8am-8pm
Saturday, December 8, Noon-6pm
Sunday, December 9, Noon-11pm
Monday, December 10-Thursday, December 13, 7:30am-11pm
Friday, December 14, 8am-8pm
Saturday, December 15, Noon-6pm
Sunday, December 16, Noon-11pm
Monday, December 17,  7:30am-11pm
Tuesday, December 18, 7:30am-7pm

Then we return to regular Intersession hours:

Wednesday, December 19-Friday, December 21, Intersession hours 8am-5pm

Meaningful beauty

“‘To see’ doesn’t mean just to register images; it means to interpret….”

“…Notice that it isn’t the description that matters, it’s the meaning. ‘Meaning,’ ‘information,’ and ‘beauty’ are all pretty much the same thing….”

“…But now it seems to me that the more you train your mind to perceive order, the more joy you are likely to get from the perception. Discoveries about natural law, the orderly relationships of parts to a whole, are deeply satisfying, not only to scientists but to painters, sculptors, musicians, and writers.”

Knight, Damon Francis. Creating Short Fiction. New York: St. Martin’s Griffin, 1997. p.14-16.

Petrogypsies by Rory Harper

Petrogypsies coverGeoscience factor: Petroleum

Bonus science: Symbiosis

Rating: 7

Before there were cowboys and aliens, there was Rory Harper’s vision of roughnecks and aliens. Petrogypsies is the story of the machinery and machinations of how the early oil industry could have been. Our hero, Henry Lee McFarland, is a naive farmboy who joins a troupe of oil-divining gypsies as they travel the South searching for the next big oil strike. Along the way, McFarland learns about drilling, calculus, aliens, and even love.

I got a kick out of this book, not least because of the Texas-inspired personalities and landscapes. While other readers might groan, I can appreciate outrageous but well-written tales that feature strapping young lads and other campy stereotypes. À chacun son goût.

I recommend Petrogypsies for a fun, summer-time read.