Mississippi River

John Gadsby Chapman, Oil on Canvas / Art Collection, Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center, The University of Texas at Austin

Davy Crockett, folk hero, West Tennessee Congressman, bear-hunter, and martyr of the Alamo, had a colorful reputation, which he enjoyed and promoted.

The Harahan Bridge

Jul 15, 2014

Mark Twain in Memphis

Jun 21, 2013

Samuel Clemens, better known to readers worldwide as Mark Twain, had an intimate connection with Memphis. 

Before he achieved fame as a writer, Clemens worked on the Mississippi River and made frequent stops in the Bluff City. At one time, he even had all of his mail forwarded to a box in Memphis, attesting to his connection with the city.

It is tragedy, however, which is most often remembered as the link between Clemens and Memphis. Clemens' love for the river led him to convince his younger brother Henry to also seek work on the Mississippi.

The Flood of 1927

May 30, 2013
Library of Congress

Flooding along the Mississippi River is a danger that has always existed. Today, we have some protection against the forces of nature through improved levee and flood-wall systems.

But, in the early years of the 20th Century, such protection was minimal at best, and the yearly floods were a part of life on the Mississippi.

Snowmelt and rainfall in the North have caused the Mississippi River to rise recently, and it is expected to crest at Memphis this morning. Forecasters with the National Weather Service anticipate the river will reach 33.5 ft at its highest point. That’s more than ten feet below the crest of 2011 which flooded thousands of homes and businesses in the area.

Oxford Press

Host Jonathan Judaken talks with Christopher Morris, author of The Big Muddy: An Environmental History of the Mississippi and Its People.

Memphis Riverfront Development Corporation / http://www.memphisriverfront.com/

This week on the Behind the Headlines Radio Roundtable, a look at the Riverfront Development project in downtown Memphis.

Host Eric Barnes, publisher of the Memphis Daily News, is joined by Benny Lendermon, President of the Memphis Riverfront Development Corporation, and Bill Dries, senior reporter for the Memphis Daily News.

Mayors of 41 cities and towns along the Mississippi River met in St. Louis today to discuss how they can better address the tribulations the river brings their way. The mayors were from as far North as St. Cloud, Minnesota and as far South as Vidalia, Louisiana and they all saw record drought this year and record flooding last year.

Any disruption to traffic along the Mississippi costs big bucks. Oil, gas and grain that total about a quarter of the nation’s gross domestic product move along the river.

The Sultana Disaster

Apr 26, 2012

On April 21, 1865, the steamboat Sultana left New Orleans. As she left port, she was having problems with leaky boilers, problems that continued to plague the vessel on her way up the river. 

The flood of April, 1912, was one of the worst floods ever seen in the Mississippi Valley.