The Mississippi River has the third largest river basin in the world. It is the fabled river of Native Americans, Marquette and Joliet, Mark Twain, and steamboat pilots. Man's modern relationship with the Mississippi River began by using the river as the focal point for transportation, commerce, and trade. Favorable locations along the river, such as landings and river confluences, grew into settlements. Settlements grew into towns, which grew into cities, including Memphis, Vicksburg, Natchez, Baton Rouge, and New Orleans.
Transportation progressed from canoes in the 1700's, to ferries and steamboats into the 1930's, and finally as a major transportation artery connecting the Western Rivers. Today, oceangoing vessels reach 240 miles inland to the Port of Baton Rouge, LA.
The Mississippi River Commission is charged with prosecuting a comprehensive river management program known as the Mississippi River and Tributaries (MR&T) project.
The MR&T project’s navigation features seek to facilitate navigation and promote commerce on the nation's most vital commercial artery. The Corps has developed a river channel with dimensions and alignments that carry floodwater flows efficiently and are also suitable for navigation. Waterborne commerce on the Mississippi River increased from 30 million tons in 1940 to nearly 500 million tons today.
This MR&T-funded publication of the “2015 Flood Control and Navigation Maps of the Mississippi River” represents its 63rd Edition. This navigation folio meets U.S. Coast Guard regulations that govern nautical chart and publication carriage requirements in U.S. waters. These regulations can be found in Title 33 (§164.33 Charts and publications) and Title 46 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations (CFR).
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