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GAC newfoundland and labrador section to mark the 30th anniversary of a very famous map.

Following a long-standing tradition, and in keeping with a keen sense of the absurd, the 2007 Spring Technical Meeting of the Newfoundland and Labrador Section will once again be held in the depths of winter, at the remarkable Johnson GEO CENTRE on scenic Signal Hill in St. John's. This will be a special meeting, for it will mark the 30th anniversary of a very famous and influential map, that laid the foundation for many of today's thematic geological maps. Best-selling author Simon Winchester coined the phrase "The map that changed the world" for William Smith's very first geological map of the British Isles. The Newfoundland and Labrador geoscience community has a similar label for a map that changed many of our perceptions about the geology of orogenic belts. We call it

"The Map that Moved Mountains"

The spring meeting (Feb 19-21st, 2007) will feature a symposium to mark the 30th anniversary of the ground-breaking "Tectonic-lithofacies map of the Appalachian Orogen", first developed by Dr. Harold (Hank) Williams in 1977. This remarkable piece of work was the first to depict orogen-scale tectonic elements in terms of their original settings and locations, and its influence has pervaded all subsequent studies of the Appalachians and influenced those in other ancient orogens. The symposium will also honour Hank's long and distinguished career as a teacher, researcher and mentor, and his huge contribution to our geological knowledge of Newfoundland, North America and western Europe.

The plan for this symposium is developing steadily, and it will feature contributions related to the Appalachian-Caledonian Orogen, especially those with broad and provocative ideas, contributions related to the evolution of mountain belts in general, and also contributions related to the evolution of geological maps and how they have influenced our thinking. St. John's will be welcoming several guest speakers from Canada and the United States. These include Jim Hibbard (North Carolina State University), Bob Hatcher (University of Tennessee), Bob Tracy (Virginia Tech), Paul Hoffman (Harvard University), Cees Van Staal (GSC, Vancouver) and Phil McCausland (University of Western Ontario). The organizers are now in the process of confirming additional guest speakers for the final program. There will also be contributions from members of the Newfoundland and Labrador geoscience community.

There will also be a general session for the presentation of papers on an eclectic range of topics, as is normally the case at these meetings. Social events are planned for the evenings of Monday 19th and Tuesday 20th of February. The plan for Tuesday night will see a gathering at one of St. John's most famous watering holes, "Bridie Molloy's", with live entertainment from local musicians who moonlight as amateur geologists. Or is it the other way around?

There are few good things that you can say about the late February weather in St. John's, but it is the season of low airfares in and out of North America's oldest city. Those who make last-minute plans to attend won't have huge expenses, and they are guaranteed a stimulating meeting and a very good time. Pre-registration continues until the day of the meeting, and it only costs $50 for professionals and $20 for students.

For further information about this meeting, consult the GAC Newfoundland and Labrador Section website at []. It is updated on a regular basis. The abstract deadline is technically past, but the province has its own time zone, and interesting submissions will still be considered. For enquiries not answered by the comprehensive website, check with the Technical Program Chair (Andrew Kerr) at [].
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Author:Williams, Hank
Publication:Geoscience Canada
Date:Dec 1, 2006
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