We propose a radiometric chronology bracket for the last glacial advance/retreat, called the Marquette readvance, in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan (Upper Peninsula) using organic material from kettle lakes and previously published age determinations on wood buried by glaciofluvial sediments. The lakes are located both inside and outside the ice-contact margin of the Marquette readvance. Wood buried in glaciofluvial sediments from the Marquette readvance was previously dated at 10,025 ± 100 14C yr BP (Hughes and Merry 1978, Lowell et al. 1999, and Pregitzer et al. 2000). Ackerman Lake, a kettle lake located inside the ice-contact margin, yielded a basal radiocarbon date of 9,495 ± 70 14C yr BP representing the time of organic accumulation after ice retreat. These dates above and below the glacial deposit bracket the age of the Marquette readvance/retreat to 360–700 14C yr, or the midpoint of 530 14C yr. Ackerman Lake yielded multiple radiocarbon dates, including an average date of 8,811 ± 11 14C yr BP (9,736–9,913 cal yr BP) at a change in stratigraphy from red clay to gray silt. This transition along the northern Upper Peninsula is interpreted to represent ice sheet retreat into Lake Superior and the reworking of older glacial sediments by ~8,500 14C yr BP. Organic material from the kettle lake sediments spanning multiple geomorphic locations (both inside and outside of the ice-contact margin) and previous radiocarbon dates from the entire Upper Peninsula yielded dates concentrating around 9,500 14C yr BP. We attribute this synchronous organic accumulation in the Upper Peninsula to be a result of climatic signature corresponding with the Preboreal Oscillation, so the duration of the Marquette glacial cover may have been less then implied by the Ackerman Lake basal age.
Journal of Great Lakes Research
Vol. 33 • No. 4
Vol. 33 • No. 4