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U.S. Geological Survey
Open-File Report 99-430 Online version 1.0

Public Review Draft – Digital Cartographic Standard for Geologic Map Symbolization (PostScript Implementation)

Prepared in cooperation with the Geologic Data Subcommittee of the Federal Geographic Data Committee

By the

U.S. Geological Survey

NOTE: Please be advised that this Public Review Draft standard has been superseded by the now-official "FGDC Digital Cartographic Standard for Geologic Map Symbolization." A substantial number of revisions to the standard were necessitated by the public's comments to the Public Review Draft, increasing the number of symbols from about 1,200 to almost 2,400. The revised standard was approved by the FGDC as the Federal standard (FGDC Doc. No. FGDC-STD-013-2006) in August 2006. The symbols in the standard are available as EPS vector graphics in the "FGDC Digital Cartographic Standard for Geologic Map Symbolization (PostScript Implementation)," which has been published as a USGS Techniques and Methods report (available at

To assist in the review of the "Public Review Draft – Digital Cartographic Standard for Geologic Map Symbolization," a PostScript implementation of the proposed standard has been prepared. The symbols are included in EPS files that can be downloaded here.

To review this standard, please go to the Geologic Data Subcommittee's Web site, which contains all necessary instructions and materials for your review. Your comments and suggestions will be used to improve the draft standard. Please visit the site and give us your feedback.

In order to help you locate the symbols in which you are interested, we have prepared a PDF version of each EPS file. To view a PDF file of the appendix section containing a particular group of symbols, click on the appropriate section title shown below.

For help in locating a particular symbol, please see the detailed index of symbols included in the introductory text. General guidelines on symbol usage, as well as on color design and map labeling, are also found there.

The EPS files can be downloaded by following the links in the PDF document that makes up each section. The name of the EPS file that contains the geologic map symbols is shown in red in the upper right-hand corner of each page of every PDF document. These names are links to the EPS files containing the symbols.

Download a free copy of Adobe Reader (required to view the PDF documents that lead to the EPS files).


1. Contacts, Key Beds, and Dikes
  1.1 Contacts
  1.2 Key Beds
  1.3 Dikes
2. Faults
  2.1 Faults (Vertical, Subvertical, Reverse, or Unspecified Offset or Orientation); Shear Zones; Minor Faults
  2.2 Normal Faults
  2.3 Strike-Slip Faults
  2.4 Thrust Faults
  2.5 Overturned Thrust Faults
  2.6 Detachment Faults
3. Boundaries Located by Geophysical Surveys
  3.1 Boundaries and Faults Located by Geophysical Methods
  3.2 Geophysical Survey Lines and Stations
4. Lineaments and Joints
5. Folds
  5.1 Anticlines; Antiforms
  5.2 Asymmetric, Overturned, and Inverted Anticlines
  5.3 Synclines; Synforms
  5.4 Asymmetric, Overturned, and Inverted Synclines
  5.5 Monoclines
  5.6 Minor Folds; Boudinage
  5.7 Free-Form Fold Symbology
6. Bedding
7. Cleavage
8. Foliation
  8.1 Foliation and Layering in Igneous Rock
  8.2 Foliation and Layering in Metamorphic Rock
9. Lineation
10. Paleontological Features
  10.1 Fossil Localities; Biostratigraphic Zone Boundary
  10.2 Fossil Symbols
11. Isopleths
  11.1 Lines of Equal Physical or Chemical Properties
  11.2 Geophysical and Structure Contours
12. Fluvial and Alluvial Features
13. Glacial and Glaciofluvial Features
14. Periglacial Features
15. Lacustrine and Marine Features
16. Eolian Features
17. Landslide and Mass-Wasting Features
18. Volcanic Features
19. Natural Resources
  19.1 Veins and Mineralized Areas; Metamorphic Facies Boundary; Mineral Resource Areas
  19.2 Areas of Extensively Disturbed Ground and Workings as Mapped Units
  19.3 Mining and Mineral-Exploration Symbology
  19.4 Mines and Underground Workings
  19.5 Oil and Gas Fields; Wells Drilled for Hydrocarbon Exploration or Exploitation
20. Hazardous Waste Sites
21. Neotectonic and Earthquake-Hazard Features
22. Plate-Tectonic Features
23. Miscellaneous Uplift and Collapse Features
24. Terrestrial Impact-Crater Features
25. Planetary Geology Features
26. Hydrologic Features
  26.1 Hydrography and Hydrologic Feature Identification Symbology
  26.2 Water Wells
  26.3 Water Gaging Stations
  26.4 Quality-of-Water Sites
  26.5 Springs
  26.6 Miscellaneous Hydrologic Symbols
27. Weather Stations
28. Transportation Features
29. Boundaries
30. Topographic Features
31. Miscellaneous Map Elements
  StratagemAge fonts:
    StratagemAge (Mac)
    StratagemAge (Win|NT|UNIX)
32. Explanation for Pattern Chart (Plate B)
33. Suggested Stratigraphic-Age and Volcanic Map-Unit Colors
  33.1 Stratigraphic-Age Map-Unit Colors
  33.2 Volcanic Map-Unit Colors
  StratagemAge fonts:
    StratagemAge (Mac)
    StratagemAge (Win|NT|UNIX)
  Custom Color Palettes:
    Suggested Stratigraphic-Age Map-Unit Colors
    Suggested Volcanic Map-Unit Colors
34. Explanation for CMYK Color Chart (Plate A)
35. Bar Scales
36. Mean Declination Arrows
  36.1 Magnetic North, East of True North
  36.2 Magnetic North, West of True North
37. Quadrangle Location Maps
  37.1 Individual States; District of Columbia; Guam; Puerto Rico; U.S. Virgin Islands
  37.2 Conterminous States
38. Geologic Age Symbol Font (StratagemAge)
  StratagemAge fonts:
    StratagemAge (Mac)
    StratagemAge (Win|NT|UNIX)


A. CMYK Color Chart (364 Kb)
  Custom Color Palettes:
    Magenta and Yellow
    Cyan and Yellow
    Cyan and Magenta
    8% Cyan with Magenta and Yellow
    13% Cyan with Magenta and Yellow
    20% Cyan with Magenta and Yellow
    30% Cyan with Magenta and Yellow
    40% Cyan with Magenta and Yellow
    50% Cyan with Magenta and Yellow
    60% Cyan with Magenta and Yellow
    70% Cyan with Magenta and Yellow
    100% Cyan with Magenta and Yellow

B. Pattern Chart (4.6 MB)
  Pattern Palettes:
    Surficial Patterns (Series 100)
    Sedimentary Patterns (Series 200)
    Igneous Patterns (Series 300)
    Miscellaneous and Metamorphic Patterns (Series 400)
    Glacial and Periglacial Patterns (Series 500)
    Sedimentary Lithology Patterns (Series 600)
    Metamorphic, Igneous, and Vein-Matter Lithology Patterns (Series 700)

For questions about the content of this report, contact Taryn Lindquist

This report will also be available from

USGS Information Services, Box 25286,
Federal Center, Denver, CO 80225
telephone: 303-202-4210; e-mail:

URL of this page:
Maintained by: Michael Diggles
Created: May 11, 2000
Last modified: February 24, 2009(mfd)