Thesis Title

Changes in the Potentiometric Surface of the Deep Aquifer in the Joplin Area, Missouri, 1900-Present

Date of Graduation

Fall 1986


Master of Science in Geospatial Sciences


Geography, Geology and Planning

Committee Chair

Thomas Moeglin

Subject Categories

Earth Sciences


Groundwater is present in abundant quantities in Franklin County, Missouri. The principal hydrostratigraphic unit includes the Eminence, Gasconade, Roubidoux, and Jefferson City Formations. Water levels in new wells drilled during five consecutive 10-year periods show moderate fluctuations in the potentiometric surface through time. Groundwater flow throughout the county is in a north-northeast direction. The major groundwater divide closely parallels Interstate 44. Two dominant groundwater mounds occur at St. Clair and west of Pacific. The major decrease in the potentiometric surface from 1931 to 1980 occurred along the Missouri River and averaged 50 feet although a decrease of up to 150 feet was observed. Increased population and industrial and agricultural activity are the main factors responsible for the changes in the potentiometric surface. Precipitation data throughout the 50-year period are erratic. The amount of precipitation added to the groundwater resource could not be quantitatively evaluated due to a lack of weather gauging stations in the county. Based on the average total thickness of the hydrostratigraphic unit, the groundwater resource for Franklin County is considered adequate for present needs. Since Franklin County is an interface between an urban-industrial area and an agricultural area, planning should be implemented in the near future to ensure equitable and efficient use of this groundwater resource.


© Jeffrey A Schloss