"Three Big Ones..."
On this date in 2011, hydrologists monitored the record rise of the Mississippi River. As noted in a previous column, The National Weather Service Forecast Center's Mississippi River Flood History posted a timely item. In 1543 Hernando Desoto experienced a 40 day flood near what-is-now Memphis. In 1788 a hurricane caused severe flooding which also marked the arrival of Acadian settlers at Fort Bute, Manchac and Baton Rouge. Another spring-flooding episode occurred in 1825, known as the last inundation of New Orleans on the lower Mississippi River. During the greatest flood in history, Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover was elected President, enacting legislation to implement flood control projects. One year later, construction on the Bonnet Carre Spillway began with a full capacity flow that would match Niagara Falls.