“Attentive readers will see the parallels between government response, and lack thereof, between the Great Flood and Hurricane Katrina, demonstrating even to the casual reader that little has changed in the intervening seventy-nine years. It also illustrates the old adage that those who are ignorant of history are doomed to repeat it.”
As Lyle Saxon writes in his introduction: “This book is not a history of the Mississippi River in the strict sense of the word, although I have outlined the discovery, the exploration, and the settlement of the valley . . . but this volume is like a scrap-book in which I have collected men’s thoughts, my own thoughts. . . . These incidents seem to me informative, or amusing, or terrible, or tragic, or fantastic, but they are all a part of the living pageant which moved down the river through the changing years.”
First published in 1927, Father Mississippi contains accounts of those who lived their lives along the Mississippi River and documents the first ripple in a wave of tremendous changes that took place in its environment. Eighty years later, Father Mississippi still stands as an important history of the floods of 1927, most often remembered for their far-reaching impact on the cities along the Mississippi River and the devastation they caused to towns in the southern Mississippi River Valley region. The accounts provide easy reading while acquainting the audience with characters such as Father Hennepin and Molly Glass, the murderess, who speak in their own words. Illustrations of life along the river and of the floods accompany these captivating excerpts.
About the Author
Lyle Saxon (1891-1946) ranks among Louisiana’s most outstanding writers. During the 1920s and 1930s, he was the central figure in the region’s literary community and was widely known as a raconteur and bon vivant. In addition to Father Mississippi, he also wrote Lafitte the Pirate, Children of Strangers, Fabulous New Orleans, Old Louisiana, and The Friends of Joe Gilmore, and he coauthored Gumbo Ya-Ya with Edward Dreyer and Robert Tallant. During the Depression, Saxon directed the state WPA Writers Project, which produced the WPA Guide to Louisiana and the WPA Guide to New Orleans.
By Lyle Saxon
HISTORY / United States / 20th Century
442 pp. 6 x 9
ISBN: 9781565547957 pb (F)