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Thread: Flood Plain - One Year Later

  1. #1
    Lon Howard's Avatar
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    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    I recently returned from a 6K mile, one month road trip, mainly to visit my remaining cousins in Mississippi County, MO; where I was born and reared, beside the confluence of the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers. Back then, I was too immature and distracted to realize we lived in a designated flood plain, meaning that if the river (in this case, the Mississippi) went too far over flood stage, the Army Corps of Engineers (i.e., the federal gov't) could blow up a levee and flood one area to save another. They did that in 1937, two years before I was born and they did it again last May (2011). The flood plain comprises about 135,000 acres and it was flooded to save the town of Cairo, IL, putting most of the flood plain on the Missouri side 20-30 feet under water.

    Not very many people still lived there even before last year's flood and the population right now is probably next to zero since none of the buildings are inhabitable or serviceable yet. Frankly, the few people who'd want to move back can't afford to anyway. I heard that some are still living in motels ... some others found relatives to taken them in ... the rest, I just don't know. The farmland is rich and productive and is owned and farmed by folks who live outside the flood plain, including some of my relatives, who live on the other side of the 'setback' levee, about 12 miles from the river.

    I snapped these pictures more or less on my way out of town and now wish I'd allowed more time for a more thoughtful documentation, but I thought I'd show them anyway, for their 'educational' value. A few farmers saw me out with my camera and drove up to me without saying anything. I could tell they were waiting for me to talk - to explain myself. They probably thought I was from FEMA (just google it ) or someplace. But I can still talk that there talk so I had a good time with them.

    The first few pictures are just to sort of set the scene. Looking at the actual homes, it's sobering to remember that families were living in them barely a year before the pictures were taken. Remember the phrase, "knee high by the 4th of July," which used to describe a promising corn crop from 75 or so years ago? The last picture and all the rest are from the 4th of June where 20+ feet of water stood one year ago. It's ironic to know that these days, if you've got water (irrigation), you've got "Product," as they call it back there.

    I don't do much PJ so if anyone has some helpful hints for me, they are very welcome.

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Flood Plain - One Year Later

  2. #2

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    Re: Flood Plain - One Year Later

    All excellent.

    I particularly like how, when you have a distant horizon, you have kept the foreground sharp.

  3. #3
    Lon Howard's Avatar
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    Re: Flood Plain - One Year Later

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff F View Post

    I particularly like how, when you have a distant horizon, you have kept the foreground sharp.
    Thanks for mentioning that, Geoff. In the future if I have a primary subject near the horizon (which is not the case here), I'll give it some extra thought before assuming the foreground needs to be soft.

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