brownstone

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brownstone,

red to brown variety of sandstonesandstone,
sedimentary rock formed by the cementing together of grains of sand. The usual cementing material in sandstone is calcium carbonate, iron oxides, or silica, and the hardness of sandstone varies according to the character of the cementing material; quartz sandstones
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. Its unusual color is caused in some instances by the presence of red iron oxide which acts as a cement, binding the sand grains together. Vast thicknesses (up to 20,000 ft/6,096 m) of brownstone were deposited in the present-day Connecticut River Valley of Massachusetts and Connecticut and in central New Jersey during the latter part of the Triassic periodTriassic period
, first period of the Mesozoic era of geologic time (see Geologic Timescale, table) from 205 to 250 million years ago.

Throughout the Triassic, E North America, as a result of the mountain-building episode that formed the Appalachians in the late Paleozoic
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. Quarries in these regions were the source for much of the building stone used in the late 19th and early 20th cent. in the construction of the many brownstone houses found from Baltimore to Boston; the stone, however, is not very durable, especially if poorly laid or maintained. Similar, but more brightly colored, sandstones also were deposited in the Rocky Mt. region during the Triassic period and Jurassic periodJurassic period
[from the Jura Mts.], second period of the Mesozoic era of geologic time, lasting from 213 to 144 million years ago. At the start of the Jurassic most of the continents were joined together until the Atlantic began to form and the Americas split off from Africa.
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. These deposits are called "redbeds" and make up the colorful landscapes of the Painted Desert of Arizona.

brownstone

A dark brown or reddish-brown sandstone, used extensively for building in the United States during the middle and late 19th century. See also: Stone

brownstone

[′brau̇n‚stōn]
(petrology)
Ferruginous sandstone with its grains coated with iron oxide.

brownstone

1. A dark brown or reddish brown arkosic sandstone, quarried and used extensively for building in the eastern US during the middle and late nineteenth cent.
2. A dwelling faced with brownstone, often a row house.