Ancient Courses: Mississippi River Meander Belt
This is one of fifteen maps of the Mississippi River created by cartographer and geologist Dr. Harold N. Fisk in 1944. The maps were part of Fisk's Geological Investigation of the Alluvial Valley of the Lower Mississippi River for the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers. The aim of this report was to determine the nature and origin of the alluvial valley of the Lower Mississippi River, and the sequence of events in the river's evolution leading to its present course (in 1944). When combined together, the maps detail a portion of the river from Cape Girardeau, Missouri to Donaldsonville, Louisiana. The maps, in addition to showing the present course of the Mississippi River, show the river's meander belt, which is the area of a valley bottom across which the river's channel has shifted over time. Fisk skillfully compresses thousands of years of the river's course changes into a single image that lets the viewer imagine what one of the largest rivers in the world looked like from the mid-twentieth century to the first human habitation of the Mississippi River Valley.
The Public Domain Review. "Ancient Courses: Harold Fisk's Meander Maps of the Mississippi River (1944)." Accessed August 5, 2021. https://publicdomainreview.org/collection/maps-of-the-lower-mississippi-harold-fisk
Fisk, Harold N. Geological Investigation of the Alluvial Valley of the Lower Mississippi River. Conducted for the Mississippi River Commission, Vicksburg, MS. December 1, 1944. War Department, Corp of Engineers, U.S. Army. https://lmvmapping.erdc.usace.army.mil/
Annotated by Raymond Hyser