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After decades of devastating flood in the Mississippi River Basin, Congress passed the Flood Control Act of 1928 which called for immediate implementation of a plan to control the waters of the mighty Mississippi. In the next decade, the Army Corps of Engineers built 29 dams and locks, hundreds of runoff channels, and over a thousand miles of new, higher levees. But the river was not an easy beast to tame. In 1936 another huge flood displaced hundreds of thousands of people in Ohio, prompting Congress to pass yet another Flood Control Act and a series of new works began along the river. The typical response to a flood was to dam areas that had been affected. But such control measures only targeted single sites, and did not look at the entire river system as a whole. As soon as a dam would be built, floods would gush into a new region.

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An old postcards showing tourists or engineers examining the Mississippi Basin Model. Photo credit

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© Amusing Planet, 2015.


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