Plate Tectonic Theory Timeline

  • Abraham Ortelius

    Abraham Ortelius
    Abraham Ortelius, was the one who came up with the continental drift theory. His evidence was that some parts of the world like: The Americas, Eurasia, and Africa fit together like a jig-saw puzzle.
  • Nicolas Steno

    Nicolas Steno
    Nicolas Steno's law of superposition was that each layer of rock is older than the layer above it.
  • James Hutton

    James Hutton
    James Hutton used Steno’s Law of Superposition. It compares rock layers to rocks above and below the rock. His evidence was that he found granite penetrating metaphoric schists, in a way which indicated that the granite had been molten at the time. This showed to him that granite formed from cooling of molten rock, not precipitation out of water as others at the time believed, and that the granite must be younger than the schists.
  • Alfred Wegner

    Alfred Wegner
    Alfred Wegener was the first to introduce the theory of continental drift to the world. His idea was rejected because of missing evidence until 1950 when enough evidence was found to support his theory.
  • Harry Hess

    Harry Hess
    Harry Hess was a geologist. He is best known for his work on sea floor spreading. He based and worked the most on the relationships between seafloor gravity anomalies, serpentized peridotite, and island arcs.
  • Alfred Wegener

    Alfred Wegener
    While browsing the university library one day Alfred came across a scientific paper that listed fossils of identical plants and animals found on opposite sides of the Atlantic. Fascinated by this information, Wegener began to look for, and find, more cases of similar organisms separated by great oceans. The continents fit together like a jig-saw puzzle.
  • Arthur Holmes

    Arthur Holmes
    Arthur's Theory is that the mantle goes under thermal convection. As magma is heated it tends to rise and then it cools and sinks again. At the time it received very little attention.
  • Harry Hess

    Harry Hess
    His sea floor spreading theory evidence in 1962. This led to his discovery of submerged and curiously flat-topped mountains that he named “guyots”. It also produced thousands of miles of echo-sounding surveys of the ocean floor.
  • Dan McKenzie

    Dan McKenzie
    McKenzie's theory is that the lithosphere is divided into a few dozen plates that move across the earth’s surface relative to eachother . He wondered since he was young what happened to the the Continents and how they fit together like a puzzle.