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john65pennington's avatar

Did the glaciers really form The Great Lakes?

Asked by john65pennington (29235points) March 7th, 2011

Last night, I was watching a premiere showing of How The Earth Was Formed, on The History Channel on cable. I was totally awed when I learned that The Great Lakes were formed by ice glaciers many years ago. Question: I am 67 years old and how come I did not know this? Was it taught in school and I just missed it? Our earth is a rotating ball in the universe. Any other earth facts you would care to give? I need to catchup on my globe history.

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15 Answers

marinelife's avatar

Yes, the Great Lakes were gouged out by the retreating ice sheets.

Talimze's avatar

Yeah, I knew that. Glaciation. Not really sure when or how I learned it, because it feels like something that I’ve always known. I’m not sure how you could have missed it either. Maybe it just didn’t seem important to you if you ever were taught it.

crisw's avatar

I think I learned that in elementary school, but then I went to elementary school in Michigan!

optimisticpessimist's avatar

Do not know if you know this. Iceland is getting bigger as it sits on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge where the plates are spreading apart.

gailcalled's avatar

We have long, thin glaciated lakes in the High Peaks area of the Adirondacks. There are also huge boulders sitting at peculiar sites, like the summit of the mountains. The boulders are called erratics and were carried along by the glacier. When the glacier melted, the boulders remained wherever they had been placed.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@john65pennington Glaciers are a favct of life this far North. This site has some glacier info, and when you walk into the building the first thing you see is a huge simulated glacier.
Oops, wrong wild center. This ones better.

LuckyGuy's avatar

We learned that in junior high earth science class, maybe before. We live near the Great Lakes and there are glacial erratics (anorthosite rock) around here that came from Canada. Litterbugs. ;-)
The glaciers also carved the Finger Lakes.

WasCy's avatar

You might enjoy reading Ghosts of Vesuvius by Charles Pellegrino. He ties together a lot of Earth’s history with cosmology and even religion. It’s very eye-opening as well as entertaining, completely readable science.

flutherother's avatar

@john65pennington It happened a lot more than 67 years ago!

blueiiznh's avatar

Do you know about continental drift?
Do you the earth is not round?
Do you know gravity is not uniform?
Tell us what earth facts you know and we can tell you what you are missing! :D

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

Yeah, I think most of my teachers have thrown that in as a tidbit any time we talked about prehistoric history, ice ages, plate tectonics, etc.

@blueiiznh Omg, I just found out that the magnetic poles are not permanent (they kinda move around), which is affecting our compasses, and they’ve even flipped before. How, I have no freaking clue. But this is like having the metal carpet from under your feet pulled out from under you. Literally.

tedd's avatar

I was taught about the great lakes being formed by glaciers in middle school.

In fairness though I lived about 10 miles from Lake Erie.

john65pennington's avatar

I truly must have missed that class in school. Glad I have The History Channel to help fill in all the blanks.

Thanks for the answers. I feel well-educated now.

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

@john65pennington Maybe it’s become a bigger part of the curriculum since you went to school?

BarnacleBill's avatar

Isn’t the History Channel amazing? Ancient Aliens is quite thought-provoking.

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