Read The Plaque https://readtheplaque.com Always read the plaque en-us Life Saver Candy CEO https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/life-saver-candy-ceo https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/life-saver-candy-ceo 2019-10-12 04:53:33.025962 Life Saver Candy CEO Life Saver Candy CEO

In Honor of
Edward John Noble
1882-1958
Industrialist  Financier  Philanthropist
This Pep-O-Mint replica was his Life Savers Co's
first flavor & originally displayed
at his Port Chester plant
Erected by Gouverneur Rotary club
1987

Submitted by Alan R Reno

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Pierre Part Bay - Virgin Island Bridge https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/pierre-part-bay-virgin-island-bridge https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/pierre-part-bay-virgin-island-bridge 2019-10-12 04:52:18.709030 Pierre Part Bay - Virgin Island Bridge Pierre Part Bay - Virgin Island Bridge

  The community of Pierre Part in nearly surrounded by water and was inaccessible by land until the Mid-20th century, thus isolated from much of the world.


Bayous lace this portion of south Louisiana. The highest land in the area is located along the banks of Bayou Lafourche, where elevation of natural levees ranges from 15 to 20 feet above sea level. The community of Pierre Part, located along a body of water known as Pierre Part Bay (which flows into Lake Verret), sits on land only 3 feet above sea level and is nearly surrounded by water. It was inaccessible by land until the mid-20th century, thus isolated from much of the world. Residents here and throughout south Louisiana adapted to a semi-aquatic way of life by using a variety of pirogues, boats and, eventually, bridges to get around. The pontoon bridge that stretches across Belle River about 4.5 miles south of here, for example, is a floating barge connected by a pivot arm to a fixed point along the shoreline. A mechanical system swings the bridge to the riverbank when the channel is open to boat traffic.

The current regional flood control system depends on an extensive etwork of levees built in the 1930s that created the nearby Atchafalaya Floodway. These levees severed bayous and fragmented waterways, radically changing the interconnectedness and hydrology of the region. Local waterways that used to receive seasonal floods of fresh water and nutrients from the Atchafalaya were cut off from this periodic flush.

This area was once heavily forested with old-growth bald cypress groves. These trees—most hundreds of years old—were harvested from the late 1800s through the early part of the 19th century. The cypress logging industry eventually declined, but the scars of skidder canals—radial canals through the swamps where loggers used massive winches to pull trees to a central loading point—remain.

Spanish moss grows abundantly in cypress trees and local swamps. Collecting and selling moss became an important industry in the Atchafalaya region in the first half of the 20th century as a way for locals to supplement their income on a seasonal basis. Pickers would collect the moss by hand using boats and long hooked poles, cure it for three to six months and sell it to area moss ginning businesses. The moss was ginned and used to stuff furniture, mattresses and other items. The Pierre Part Store, which is still in operation today more than 100 years after its founding, conducted much of its early business through the trade of moss for goods.

From the 1880s to 1970s Pierre Part was ravaged by floods. After one such flood, a small, undamaged statue of Mary was found in the ruins of the local St. Joseph the Worker Catholic Church. To commemorate The Blessed Virgin Mary—believed to provide protection to this community still vulnerable to flooding and storm surge—a statue was placed on the nearby Virgin Island and has stood there ever since.

Visit Atchafalaya.org for more information about this site.

This site’s geology/geomorphology: Holocene deltaic deposits of Lafourche course of Mississippi River.

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Lake Palourde - Victor Guarisco Lake End Park https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/lake-palourde-victor-guarisco-lake-end-park https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/lake-palourde-victor-guarisco-lake-end-park 2019-10-12 04:52:16.242935 Lake Palourde - Victor Guarisco Lake End Park Lake Palourde - Victor Guarisco Lake End Park

  Lake Palourde covers 11,520 acres and is one of a number of large lakes that once existed within the historic Atchafalaya River Basin's 3-million-acre landscape.

Lake Palourde is just east of Morgan City. The word palourde is French for “clam,” an important food source for early settlers to the area. The lake covers 11,520 acres and is one of a number of large lakes that once existed within the historic Atchafalaya River Basin’s 3-million-acre landscape. Construction of the East Atchafalaya Basin Levee in the 1930s cut off Lake Palourde from the Atchafalaya River and the bayous and waterways that remained inside the newly created Atchafalaya Basin Floodway.

Severed from the river’s significant flow and sediment deposits, the lake did not fill in with delta landforms like others within the floodway. In fact, Lake Palourde eventually began suffering from erosion along LA Hwy. 70, where it had been cut off by the levee. To stabilize the shoreline in the early 2000s, fill material was pumped through three miles of temporary pipeline from annual dredging operations in the Atchafalaya River. Today Lake Palourde remains a popular location for fishing and recreational boating, but the Atchafalaya’s powerful influence on this area continues. Lake Palourde connects to Lake Verret and Grassy Lake—two bodies of water also outside the floodway levees—and drains into Avoca Island Cutoff, flowing toward the river and other bayous and lakes to the south. When the Atchafalaya is at flood stage, Lake Palourde’s water level is elevated as the river backs up through these connecting waterways.

Contrary to Lake Palourde’s open water story is that of the historical, isolated basin community of Bayou Chene, which today is buried under several feet of silt. Settled in the 1830s about 40 miles north of here, the community included a church, a school, a merchandise store and a post office—all located on a bayou called chêne (“oak” in French). By the 1920s, approximately 500 people—who worked as lumberjacks, fishermen, trappers, moss pickers and farmers—called the area home. Occasional flooding threatened Bayou Chene, but it was the Mississippi River Flood of 1927 that destroyed much of the community. In spite of efforts to rebuild, once the Basin levees were constructed and river channels were dredged, repeat flooding ultimately caused most residents to leave by the 1950s. Former residents and descendants still gather annually for a reunion—frequently at Lake End Park—to reconnect and reminisce about their little bit of paradise.

Visit Atchafalaya.org for more information about this site.

This site’s geology/geomorphology: Holocene backswamp deposits.

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Atchafalaya River - Mr. Charlie Oil Rig https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/atchafalaya-river-mr-charlie-oil-rig https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/atchafalaya-river-mr-charlie-oil-rig 2019-10-12 04:52:13.717710 Atchafalaya River - Mr. Charlie Oil Rig Atchafalaya River - Mr. Charlie Oil Rig

  Because the lower Atchafalaya River is near the Gulf, this area is a popular shipping departure point. But challenges such as combating sedimentation and the close proximity of the three bridges sometimes cause difficulties for river traffic.

The 137-mile Atchafalaya River is the fifth largest river in North America by discharge. Atchafalaya means "long river" in Choctaw, from hachcha, "river," and falaya, "long." The river begins near Simmesport at the confluence of the Red River with the Mississippi and flows south past Morgan City, emptying into the Gulf of Mexico in Atchafalaya Bay. A frequented navigation route, vessels using the Atchafalaya River save almost 172 miles when traveling between the Mississippi above Old River Lock and the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway in southern Louisiana.

Because the lower Atchafalaya River is near the Gulf, the area is a popular shipping departure point. Navigating this river section is not without its challenges, however. Combating sedimentation requires many resources, and the close proximity of the three bridges spanning the Atchafalaya here sometimes causes difficulties for river traffic.

Once offshore oil drilling off the coast of Morgan City began in the 1940s, vessels frequently conducted the expensive and time-consuming process of transporting construction materials down the Atchafalaya River for drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. Eventually Alden J. “Doc” LaBorde devised a plan to create a movable, submersible barge capable of carrying everything needed for drilling and traveling to any location in the Gulf. Once a drilling operation was complete, the barge and equipment could be floated to the next location.

Mr. Charlie was the first rig of its kind. It began service in 1954 and made drilling for oil easier and more economical. A floating city that provided lodging for up to 58 workers, the rig was built on top of a barge 220 feet long and 85 feet wide, with a 60-foot-high platform to hold the drilling equipment and living quarters. The rig was transported to a chosen location and positioned for each operation. Then water tanks were filled to weigh the base down and submerge it on the Gulf floor.

This rig was named after Charles H. Murphy, the Murphy Oil Corporation owner’s father, who provided inspiration and initial funding to build it. Throughout Mr. Charlie’s life, Shell Oil and other oil companies subcontracted the rig from Ocean Drilling and Exploration Company. As oil exploration began moving to deeper water, Mr. Charlie’s 40-foot depth limitation became a liability, and the rig drilled its last well in 1986.

Though no longer needed for its primary purpose, today Mr. Charlie serves as a museum and training location for oilfield workers. In 2012, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers named Mr. Charlie Oil Rig a Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark.

Visit Atchafalaya.org for more information about this site.

This site’s geology/geomorphology: Holocene meander-belt (point bar and overbank) deposits of the Teche course of the Red River.

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Atchafalaya River - Morgan City Great Wall https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/atchafalaya-river-morgan-city-great-wall https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/atchafalaya-river-morgan-city-great-wall 2019-10-12 04:52:11.404893 Atchafalaya River - Morgan City Great Wall Atchafalaya River - Morgan City Great Wall

  The first Atchafalaya levee or wall constructed in 1946 was 13 feet tall on both sides of the river. Subsequent floods resulted in its redesign and expansion to the current 21-foot-wall, built after the flood on 1973.


The Atchafalaya River, the fifth largest river in North America by discharge, receives water from both the Mississippi and Red rivers and is the most direct route to the Gulf of Mexico. To keep the Mississippi in its current channel, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers mandates that only 30 percent of the river’s flow—about 440,000 cubic feet per second—is allowed down the Atchafalaya. This volume is regulated at the Old River Control Structure near Simmesport.

As snow melts or an unusual amount of rain falls throughout the U.S., the volume of water flowing down the Mississippi increases and eventually reaches flood stage. More water must also funnel down the Atchafalaya, whose flood stage is six feet at this location, threatening flooding in cities located along each of these rivers. As the final city before the Atchafalaya Basin and River reach the Gulf, Morgan City’s history is intimately tied to this danger.

After the Mississippi River Flood of 1927 and passage of the Flood Control Act of 1928, levees were built along these two rivers to minimize flooding in populated areas. The first Atchafalaya River levee or wall constructed in 1946 was 13 feet tall on both sides of the river. Subsequent floods resulted in its redesign and expansion. The current 21-foot-wall was built after the Flood of 1973. In Morgan City, a walkway was installed on top of the wall, giving visitors a bird’s eye view of the river and traffic.

In addition to this seawall, a levee ring surrounds the entire city, turning it into a walled island accessible only by bridges during floods. This levee protects Morgan City in all directions from back flow during high water and storm surges from hurricanes. In 1942 the USACE also created the Wax Lake Outlet, an artificial channel off the Atchafalaya River that diverts water to the Gulf.

The Gulf Intracoastal Waterway is yet another connection between the Mississippi River and Morgan City. It serves as a safer route for large commercial vessels as they transport goods inland along the coast. The 1,300-mile waterway heads west toward Houston and east toward the Mississippi through two branches—one 15 miles below Port Allen on the west bank near Baton Rouge and another in New Orleans.

Due to Morgan City’s central location on the Atchafalaya and the GIWW, it has developed into an important hub for industrial and commercial activities. The oil and gas industries and commercial fishing fleets use Morgan City as a shipping point, and stevedore and oil and gas supply companies have a large presence in the area.

If the Mississippi River were ever to change course again, as it did periodically before human intervention, the river would follow its natural inclination and essentially become the Atchafalaya River, passing directly through this area. Some say it’s not if this will happen but when, as time and Mother Nature will have the final say.

Visit Atchafalaya.org for more information about this site.

This site’s geology/geomorphology: Holocene meander-belt (point bar and overbank) deposits of the Teche course of the Red River.

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Cypress Swamps - Wedell-Williams Aviation & Cypress Sawmill Museum https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/cypress-swamps-wedell-williams-aviation-cypress-sawmill-museum https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/cypress-swamps-wedell-williams-aviation-cypress-sawmill-museum 2019-10-12 04:52:08.777317 Cypress Swamps - Wedell-Williams Aviation & Cypress Sawmill Museum Cypress Swamps - Wedell-Williams Aviation & Cypress Sawmill Museum

  Like redwoods, cypress trees can live a long time and grow to fantastic sizes. Prior to largescale logging, south Louisiana and the Atchafalaya Basin were full of large stands of giant cypress.


Bald cypress (Taxodium distichum) trees and swamps are iconic symbols of south Louisiana that have evolved along with the rivers and bayous of this region. Seasonal variation in water levels provides the perfect condition for cypress to germinate in low water and grow. Over time, they mature into larger trees, dominating other species that are less tolerant of long periods of flooding.

While frequently described as a hardwood, bald cypress trees are actually conifers. In fact, this species belongs to the family Cupressacaceae, which also includes junipers and redwoods. Like redwoods, cypress trees can live a long time and grow to fantastic sizes. Prior to largescale logging, south Louisiana and the Atchafalaya Basin were full of large stands of giant cypress.

During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, these dense, insect-resistant old-growth trees were harvested from swamps and bayous to provide what many thought were limitless amounts of construction materials. Cypress lumber helped build Louisiana homes, businesses and furniture, and provided fuel for industry during the early years of statehood. Even before the peak harvesting decades, many trees close to navigable waterways, plantation sugar mills and urban centers had already been cut. The use of mechanical means—small-gauge railroad tracks, steamboats repurposed for the timber trade, and steam-powered winches that drug felled trees across and out of the swamps—powered the boom years between 1870 and 1920, when most giant cypress trees were logged from the Atchafalaya Basin. Felled logs were assembled into rafts and transported by steamboat to sawmills along Bayou Teche and the Atchafalaya River. State-of-the-art equipment using steam power and mass-production technology was installed around 1890. By 1909, 10 mills operated on the Teche alone, with the largest two located near its confluence with the lower Atchafalaya in Patterson.

Today, bald cypress trees are protected in Louisiana, but only a few scattered old-growth stands remain. Cypress regeneration in the swampy Atchafalaya Floodway is very poor because of the area’s altered water cycles, driven by changes to the historic natural flow. Most of the trees visitors see are second-growth stands less than a century old, but they still play vital roles in the local cultural and natural landscape. In addition to creating a mysterious backdrop for folklore, these cypress swamps provide habitats for many species of fish, birds and other wildlife. They are also stronger than bottomland hardwood forests and serve as important natural buffers for hurricanes and floods.

Visit Atchafalaya.org for more information about this site.

This site’s geology/geomorphology: Holocene crevasse splay deposits of Bayou Teche occupation of Mississippi River

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Bayou Plaquemine - Bayou Road https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/bayou-plaquemine-bayou-road https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/bayou-plaquemine-bayou-road 2019-10-12 04:52:05.275287 Bayou Plaquemine - Bayou Road Bayou Plaquemine  - Bayou Road

 Bayou Plaquemine was an important Mississippi River distributary that allowed for boat navigation throughout the Atchafalaya Basin. Travelers left the Mississippi via Bayou Plaquemine, moved west to the Atchafalaya, and then headed further inland along Bayou Courtableau.

Iberville first journaled about Bayou Plaquemine as he toured the newly claimed Louisiana territory for France. Legend says that the name Plaquemine comes from piakemine or pliakemine, the Natchez Indian word for the local persimmon.

One of a series of Mississippi River distributaries—including Bayou Lafourche, Bayou Manchac and the Atchafalaya River—Bayou Plaquemine was an important waterway because it allowed for boat navigation throughout the Atchafalaya Basin. American Indians used the bayou as an early portage location, carrying boats and cargo back and forth between it and the Mississippi. Early settlers used this same portage and waterway to access the Attakapas and Opelousas regions as they migrated north from New Orleans. Travelers left the Mississippi River by Bayou Plaquemine, moved west to the Atchafalaya, then up to Bayou Courtableau and further north to the town of Washington. They also entered the Vermilion River to the Opelousas region. Waterways like Bayou Plaquemine made up Louisiana’s secondary and tertiary river systems and were central to early settlement and trade in the region.

Because of its strategic location, the intersection of Bayou Plaquemine and the Mississippi River was an important landing for steamboats and packet boats, which were smaller but carried mail, passengers and cargo just like larger vessels. Peak season for navigation occurred between January and mid-May, during the Mississippi’s annual spring flooding, but keeping the bayou clear required constant effort. Navigation was frequently delayed by snags, rafts, stumps and sandbars in the bayou, or by overhanging branches and trees along its banks.

As residents populated the area and built homes and businesses, they wanted to protect their investments from the frequent floods. In 1866, a levee was constructed at the Mississippi River. The Plaquemine Lock was completed in 1909 to control water flow while also allowing boat traffic to move between the river, the bayou and points further inland. The lock served the area for half a century before increased port traffic necessitated a new lock upriver in Port Allen. The Plaquemine Lock and bayou were finally closed permanently in 1961, and the levee along the Mississippi River was rebuilt.

Visit Atchafalaya.org for more information about this site.

This site’s geology/geomorphology: Holocene natural levee deposits of distributary course of Mississippi River.

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Port Allen High School (1936-1978) / Port Allen Middle School (1979-Present) https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/port-allen-high-school-1936-1978-port-allen-middle-school-1979-present https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/port-allen-high-school-1936-1978-port-allen-middle-school-1979-present 2019-10-12 04:51:49.661579 Port Allen High School (1936-1978) / Port Allen Middle School (1979-Present) Port Allen High School (1936-1978) / Port Allen Middle School (1979-Present)

High school opportunities in the parish date to at least 1897, when Eureka Central School in Brusly offered classes to white students in the ninth, tenth, and later eleventh grades. In 1899, the West Baton Rouge School Board made plans for three high schools, Duvall, Port Allen and Brusly. Eventually two of the three high schools were established and were open to white students. The first Port Allen High School opened in 1920. The principal was Miss Amelia Stevens who was in charge of the two-story brick building, which included seven classrooms for grades first through eleventh. The original Port Allen High School was located on the south side of Rosedale Road at N. Jefferson Avenue. In 1949, Cohn High School was opened for African American students in West Baton Rouge Parish and initially offered grades seventh through twelfth.

During the nation's Great Depression (1929-1939), President Roosevelt established New Deal programs, including the Public Works Administration (PWA) to provide jobs to the unemployed masses. In West Baton Rouge Parish, three school buildings were completed in 1938, Port Allen High School (Federal Emergency Administration Public Works Project No. LA 1055-D) and Brusly High School and Gymnasium. The new Port Allen High School building was built directly across Rosedale Road facing the old brick school. The old brick school was eventually replaced by the current Port Allen Elementary School.

Port Allen High School was constructed on ten acres of land purchased from Homestead Plantation. The proceeds of a parish wide bond issue and a grant from the PWA funded the project. The designs were done by the Bodman and Murrell Architects and the construction was carried out by Caldwell Brothers and Hart Contractors. In 1941, a music room, and industrial arts shop, and a janitor's home were added to the campus. Soon after, in 1947, a football field was added, and in 1957 a classroom building was added, which for a time served as a Port Allen Junior High. Additional classrooms, science laboratories and a new lunchroom were later constructed.

Two West Baton Rouge Parish high schools were integrated over the course of ten years. In 1965, one African American student enrolled in Brusly High. In 1968, a select group of eight African American students from Cohn High School enrolled at Port Allen High School as the first steps towards desegregating the high schools. In 1969, Cohn High School was closed and the African American student body was integrated into Brusly and Port Allen High Schools. In 1978, a new Brusly High School and in 1979 a new Port Allen High School opened to accommodate fully integrated student populations.

This building is best known for its outstanding Art Deco design. The Art Deco elements, often seen on PWA and WPA buildings, are characterized by "streamline deco" elements. The bold lines, horizontal moldings, rounded corners, sculpted details, and geometric designs still distinguish the front of the Port Allen Middle School. Above the "auditorium" is a sculpted relief of an athlete and above the main entrance is a sculpted relief of an open book flanked by pelicans, the Louisiana state bird. The geometric forms and mechanical elements are borrowed from airplanes and ocean liners that reflect a world of the future imagined in the 1930s. Today the school sits on 19 acres and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

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Bayou Plaquemine - Plaquemine Lock State Historic Site https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/bayou-plaquemine-plaquemine-lock-state-historic-site https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/bayou-plaquemine-plaquemine-lock-state-historic-site 2019-10-12 04:51:45.737388 Bayou Plaquemine - Plaquemine Lock State Historic Site Bayou Plaquemine - Plaquemine Lock State Historic Site

 Upon completion in 1909, The Plaquemine Lock was an engineering marvel thanks to the unique gravity of water flow system that operated the highest fresh water lock in the world.

As a distributary of the Mississippi River and an inland route to the heart of Louisiana through the Atchafalaya Basin, Bayou Plaquemine was used by American Indians as a navigable course centuries before European exploration of the area. From the early 1700s, the bayou served as a commercial transport route, promoting settlement and economic prosperity throughout Louisiana via the Atchafalaya, Red and other rivers.

By the 1800s, a lively steamboat trade had fueled significant growth of the town of Plaquemine. But severe flooding from the Mississippi threatened the area, and eventually a levee was built to separate the bayou from the river. As levee construction caused the river’s water level to grow higher, boats needed a lift to get in and out of lower inland bayous. The Plaquemine Lock solved this shipping problem and reconnected Bayou Plaquemine to the Mississippi.

It took 14 years to build the Plaquemine Lock, which was designed by Colonel George Washington Goethals (who later became chief engineer for the famous Panama Canal). Upon completion in 1909, the structure was an engineering marvel thanks to a unique gravity water flow system that operated the highest fresh water lock in the world at 51 feet. Since there were no lighthouses along the Mississippi River to help guide ships, the “Dutch Castle on the Hill” (as the Plaquemine Lock House was nicknamed) was constructed with reflective white glazed ceramic tiles to make it more visible to river traffic. Once the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway was built, the lock served as the northern-most terminal, allowing cargo to be transported from the Mississippi River to the Atchafalaya Basin and then on to Texas.

Increased use during and after World War II eventually put a strain on the Plaquemine Lock, however, and in 1961, a larger lock was completed upriver in Port Allen. The Plaquemine Lock was decommissioned after 52 years of operation. Thirteen years later the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built a levee across the mouth of Bayou Plaquemine, permanently closing its access to the Mississippi River.

Once Bayou Plaquemine was separated from the Mississippi, its water quality began to suffer due to low flow capacity. In 2006 the Fresh Water Pump Project began pumping fresh water from the river back into the bayou to improve and support commercial and recreational use, including fishing and boating.

Today the Plaquemine Lock and surrounding 14-acre area is a state historic site and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

This site’s geology/geomorphology: Holocene natural levee deposits of distributary course of Mississippi River

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Mississippi River - Scott's Bluff https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/mississippi-river-scott-s-bluff https://readtheplaque.com/plaque/mississippi-river-scott-s-bluff 2019-10-12 04:51:43.712229 Mississippi River - Scott's Bluff Mississippi River - Scott's Bluff

 The Mississippi River - One of the longest rivers in North America - is divided into three sections: Upper, Middle and Lower Mississippi. At certain points on the southernmost section, the river is one mile wide.

The Mississippi River is one of the longest rivers in North America, flowing 2,340 miles from Lake Itasca, Minn., to the Gulf of Mexico below New Orleans. Its floodplain encompasses more than 30 million acres. The lower Mississippi is bound by high bluffs and man-made levees next to oxbow lakes, swamps and marshes. Cities developed here because of the river’s promise as a major commercial corridor. Though the waterway has more than 250 tributaries, most connections in Louisiana are distributaries. Historically, they spread the Mississippi’s water and silt across broad areas, enriching the agricultural land on both sides of the river.

The Mississippi River’s watershed measures 1.85 million square miles (41 percent of the U.S.) and geographically spans from the crest of the Rocky Mountains to the crest of the Appalachian Mountains, encompassing 31 states and two Canadian provinces. The river is divided into three sections—the Upper Mississippi, the Middle Mississippi and the Lower Mississippi (which encompasses the stretch between the Ohio River and the Gulf). At certain points on the Lower Mississippi, the river is one mile wide.

This massive waterway has shifted course many times in geologic history. Its current basin was shaped by the Laurentide Ice Sheet, which ended with the last ice age about 11,700 years ago. The river’s present course dates to about 800 to 1,000 years ago, when it shifted east from the Lafourche Delta and shaped Scott’s Bluff, one of the first bluffs on the river north of New Orleans. This high land is primarily composed of loess parent material transported gradually by winds during the Pleistocene era. The loess soil, which covers 10 percent of the Earth’s surface, accumulated in layers to significant depths on the east bank of the Mississippi from Scott’s Bluff to points north of Natchez.

The bluff is believed to be named after a previous owner, Dr. William Bernard Scott, who bought the property in 1839 from Lelia Skipworth, the daughter of a former governor of the 1810 West Florida Republic. Local legend marks Scott’s Bluff as the location of the famous baton rouge or “red stick” from which the city of Baton Rouge got its name. Today the bluff is home to the campus of Southern University and A&M College—a historically black, 1890 land-grant institution.

Visit Atchafalaya.org for more information about this site.

This site’s geology/geomorphology: Pleistocene floodplain deposits of Mississippi River blanketed by Peoria Loess.

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