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Mississippi Flooding

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The Mississippi River crested in Memphis at nearly 48 feet yesterday -- not quite surpassing its all-time record set in 1937, but still soaking low-lying areas with enough water to require a massive cleanup. The upper Mississippi basin has been experiencing near-record flooding for weeks now. Across Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, and Arkansas, heavy rains have left the ground saturated and rivers swollen. At the same time as recovery begins in Memphis, residents of Louisiana are working to prepare themselves for the massive amounts of water heading their way -- experts estimate that as many as three million acres may become submerged in the next few days. Collected below are images of the recent floods and those who are coping with this disaster. [35 photos]

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Floodwater engulfs a home after the Army Corps of Engineers blew a massive hole in a levee at the confluence of the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers to divert water from the town of Cairo, Illinois May 3, 2011 near Wyatt, Missouri. The diversion flooded about 130,000 acres of Missouri farmland and 100 homes in the state. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Floodwater engulfs a home after the Army Corps of Engineers blew a massive hole in a levee at the confluence of the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers to divert water from the town of Cairo, Illinois May 3, 2011 near Wyatt, Missouri. The diversion flooded about 130,000 acres of Missouri farmland and 100 homes in the state. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Click this image to see a before-and-after comparison of some of the flooding around the Mississippi River between April 21st and May 10th, 2011. The Thematic Mapper aboard NASA's Landsat 5 captured these two images in natural color.   [click image to view transition]   (NASA Earth Observatory) #
In this photo made May 3, 2011, water flows west on to farmland where the Birds Point levee stood in Mississippi County, Missouri. When the Army Corps of Engineers intentionally broke the clay levee holding back the rising Mississippi River, muddy water came pouring over Missouri farmland and raised fears that the fertile soil would be rendered unusable for months if not years. But soil experts say the long-term damage may not be so bad for farming and some land could even be planted with soybeans later this summer. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) #
Water from the swollen Mississippi River surrounds the Historic Yazoo & Mississippi Valley Railroad Company Depot in Vicksburg, Mississippi, on May 10, 2011. More residents were warned on Monday to get out of the way of the raging Mississippi River as it surged toward a near-record crest in its southern reaches, prompting authorities to try to divert some of the flood waters. (Reuters/Sean Gardner) #
Floodwater engulfs a farm after the Army Corps of Engineers blew a massive hole in a levee at the confluence of the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers to divert water from the town of Cairo, Illinois, on May 3, 2011 near Wyatt, Missouri. The diversion flooded about 130,000 acres of Missouri farmland and 100 homes in the state. (Scott Olson/Getty Images) #
People gather to look at opened bays on the Bonnet Carre Spillway in Norco, Louisiana, on Monday, May 9, 2011. The spillway, which the Army Corps of Engineers built about 30 miles upriver from New Orleans in response to the great flood of 1927, last opened during the spring 2008. Monday marked the 10th time it has been opened since the structure was completed in 1931. The spillway diverts water from the Mississippi River to Lake Pontchartrain. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) #
Highway T in Wayne County, Missouri, is closed Tuesday, May 3, 2011, as raging floodwaters from Wappapello Lake, which overtopped an emergency spillway, pour through the area and into the St. Francis River. The waters took out a nearly 400-foot long section of the roadway. (AP Photo/Daily American Republic, Paul Davis) #
Volunteers fill sandbags to help in the fight against rising floodwater May 7, 2011 in Memphis, Tennessee. (Scott Olson/Getty Images) #
A scoreboard for an athletic field is seen surrounded by floodwater Tuesday, May 10, 2011, in Memphis, Tennessee. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) #
A towboat pushes barges down the flood-swollen Mississippi River at Memphis, Tennessee, on Monday, May 9, 2011. (AP Photo/Danny Johnston) #
A flooded residential area is seen in this aerial photograph Tuesday, May 10, 2011, in Memphis, Tennessee. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) #
In this image taken from video, an explosion lights up the night sky as the the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers blows an 11,000 foot hole in the Birds Point levee in Mississippi County, Missouri, on Monday, May 2, 2011. Army Corps of Engineers' Maj. Gen. Michael Walsh gave the order to blow a two-mile hole into the Birds Point levee in southeast Missouri, which will flood 130,000 acres of farmland in Missouri's Mississippi County but protect nearby Cairo, Illinois. (AP Photo/St. Louis Post-Dispatch, David Carson) #
Water flows through an intentional breach in the Birds Point levee Tuesday, May 3, 2011, in Mississippi County, Missouri. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) #
Flooded fields are seen from a National Guard helicopter in northwestern Tennessee on Tuesday, May 3, 2011. (AP Photo/Erik Schelzig) #
Kimberly Nailor pauses to wipe her forehead while using sandbags to protect a home as floodwaters slowly rise in Memphis, Tennessee May 8, 2011.(Reuters/Eric Thayer) #
A herd of more than 40 deer congregate on one of the few high points in Posey County's Point Township, Indiana, on Wednesday afternoon, May 4, 2011. (AP Photo/The Evansville Courier & Press, Denny Simmons) #
Mississippi wildlife law enforcement agent Hugh Johnson, walks past a recently killed White Tail buck in Greenville, Mississippi, on Thursday, May 5, 2011. Johnson said herds of deer, coyotes, some wild hogs and other wildlife are swimming to Greenville because of the flooding on the Arkansas side of the Mississippi River. And with the islands in the river flooded over, the wildlife have no choice but swim to the shore around Greenville or drown. This deer broke its neck when it tried to run through a chain-link fence. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis) #
Trash floats by flooded homes on Monday, May 9, 2011, in Memphis, Tennessee. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey) #
Workers use cranes to remove some of the Bonnet Carre Spillway's wooden barriers, which serve as a dam against the high water in Norco, Louisiana, on Monday, May 9, 2011, in anticipation of rising floodwater. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert) #
Water covers a gravestone May 9, 2011 in Luxora, Arkansas. Luxora sits along the Mississippi River where the water level in the river is currently higher than the level of the town causing the ground to be saturated and leaving nowhere for the water in the town to drain. (Scott Olson/Getty Images) #
A backhoe operator builds a seven-foot levee around the Carter, Mississippi, home of Charline Killebrew, north of Yazoo City Monday, May 9, 2011. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis) #
Temporary structures are constructed at Angola State Penitentiary in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana, on Monday, May 9, 2011. A convoy of buses and vans transferred inmates with medical problems from Angola, which is bordered on three sides by the Mississippi River, while other inmates were moved to buildings on higher ground as part of an effort to prepare for possible flooding. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) #
A snake swims as floodwaters slowly rise in Holly Grove, Arkansas May 10, 2011. (Reuters/Eric Thayer) #
A house is engulfed by floodwater May 7, 2011 in Memphis, Tennessee. (Scott Olson/Getty Images) #
Zebedee Anderson fishes while standing on a flooded section of the Bill Ramsey Memorial Highway May 10, 2011 near Vicksburg, Mississippi. (Scott Olson/Getty Images) #
Workers fill sandbags into the night in Memphis, Tennessee May 6, 2011. (Reuters/Eric Thayer) #
Two kayakers paddle down the Mississippi River Sunday, May 8, 2011 in Memphis, Tennessee. as floodwaters continue to rise. (AP Photo/Wade Payne) #
Rose Fair holds her dog Rascal as she prepares to leave her home due to rising floodwaters at the Rosewood Estates mobile home park Saturday, May 7, 2011, in Memphis, Tennessee. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) #
Homes on Mud Island are seen as floodwaters rise in Memphis, Tennessee May 9, 2011. (Reuters/Eric Thayer) #
The nose of a submerged aircraft barely surfaces in floodwater at General DeWitt Spain downtown general aviation airport, which is closed due to flooding, on Tuesday, May 10, 2011, in Memphis, Tennessee. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) #
Sherry Rose measures the water level in her home as floodwaters slowly rise in Holly Grove, Arkansas, on May 10, 2011. (Reuters/Eric Thayer) #
A shoe floats on floodwater and debris in the middle of a street May 9, 2011 in Memphis, Tennessee. (Scott Olson/Getty Images) #
Tadpoles swim in slowly rising floodwaters of a street in Memphis, Tennessee, on May 8, 2011. (Reuters/Eric Thayer) #
Floodwater surrounds homes May 3, 2011 in Morehouse, Missouri. (Scott Olson/Getty Images) #
A man looks at partially submerged homes as floodwaters slowly rise in Finley, Missouri, on May 7, 2011. (Reuters/Eric Thayer) #

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