Historic Markers Across Tennessee

Hymelia Crevasse/Bonnet Carre Crevasse/Laplace, Louisiana/Reserve, Louisiana

Marker ID:  11
Location: Mud Island River Park, 125 N Front Street, Memphis, TN
County: Shelby
Coordinates: N 35° 8.968    W 090° 3.507
  35.14946666    -90.05845
Waymark: None


Hymelia Crevasse/Bonnet Carre Crevasse/LaPlace, Louisiana/Reserve, Louisiana
Panel #21 Mississippi Riverwalk

A) Hymelia Crevasse
Mile 131.3 AHP

In 1903, a 200-foot gap opened in the levee at Hymelia Plantation. One thousand laborers were put to work constructing a sandbag fill but a runaway barge crashed into the repairs and destroyed them. Flood damages in the area totaled $25 million.

B) Bonnet Carre Crevasse
Mile 132.7 AHP

The east bank levee opposite the Bonnie Carre Point collapsed frequently during the 1800’s. After each crevasse, local interests would rebuild the levee, only to see it break again, often opening a mile wide gap. Lora resources were exhausted when the levee broke in 1874, and the crevasse remained open for nine years until the Mississippi River Commission provided repair funds. Construction of the mainline levee system permanently closed in Bonnet Carre crevasse, and the spillway five miles south now relieves flood pressure in the area.

C) LaPlace, Louisiana
Mile 134.0 AHP

LaPlace has long been a truck-farming and sugar refining center, and the petrochemical industry has located several plants and river terminals in this area.

D) Reserve, Louisiana
Mile 138.6 AHP

In the heart of sugar cane country, Reserve is home to one of the world’s largest sugar refineries. Sugar cane has been the basis of Louisiana’s agricultural economy since the end of the 18th Century. In 1795, Etienne de Bore imported an expert sugar maker and became the first planter in the state to successfully concert his cane crop into sugar. Many followed his example, and the arrival of Santo Domingo refugees skilled in production boosted the industry’s growth. By 1849 there were 1,536 sugar plantations in Louisiana, with 100,000 slaves at work. Modern plantations are highly mechanized, and the cane harvest usually begins in late October.

A photo of this marker can be found on HMDB.org


AHP - Above Head of Passes, this is the distance from the mouth of a river when measured along the course (navigable channel) starting at zero.