Have Flood Controls on the Mississippi River Been Successful?
ES1308  The Flood of 1927

The Great Flood of 1927 was one of the most powerful natural disasters of the 1900s. Following several months of unusually heavy rain during late 1926 and early 1927, the Mississippi River flooded. During the height of the flood, the river was over 80 miles wide at some locations.

After the failure of a levee at Mounds Landing, Mississippi, the flooding river flowed with the force of Niagara Falls. The levee failure eventually resulted in the flooding of an area the size of Connecticut. Ten feet of water covered towns up to 60 miles away from the river. Even after 5 weeks, the area around Mounds Landing was covered with 100 feet of water.

In the end, the Flood of 1927 affected an area of 27,000 square miles, about the size of all the New England states combined. Over 130,000 homes were lost and 700,000 people were displaced. 246 flood-related deaths were reported. Property damage was estimated at 350 million dollars, equivalent to approximately 5 billion dollars today.

  !   Click each dot to see a photograph of flood damage from the Flood of 1927.

3. Identify the events surrounding the Great Flood of 1927. Use the images and note some of the effects of the flood. Were attempts at flood control effective during this event?

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