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The New Jersey Geological Survey recently discovered stromatolites providing the earliest indications of ancient biological activity in what would one day become New Jersey.

Stromatolites were discovered in the 1.2 billion-year-old Franklin Marble from the New Jersey Highlands. Stromatolites are the fossilized remains of colonies of cyanobacteria that often have a characteristic dome-shaped laminated structure. The lamination's are thin mats that were constructed by the microorganisms as they trapped fine grains of calcium carbonate on their sticky filaments. A new organic mat was then constructed over the sediment, trapping another layer of sediment and producing the next lamination. The Franklin Marble was formed from limestone deposited in a marine (ocean) environment during the Precambrian Era.