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the Great


By M.A.Rose

When what is believed to have been the greatest flood ever known in the lower Mississippi valley destroys one hundred million dollars' worth of property and takes fifty lives, decisive action by the Federal Government can no longer be delayed. The Republican national platform of this year pledges the party to take such engineering steps as may prevent a recurrence of this great calamity. Theodore Roosevelt, a little before the Chicago convention, proposed that the machinery used in digging the Panama Canal be put to work for this purpose in the periodically overflowed areas. This article by Mr. M. A. Rose is one of unusual timeliness and significance. Mr. Rose is a resident of New Orleans, and was an eye witness to some of the most dramatic incidents in connection with this fight against the Great Flood.

AIN is sloshing down, a down-
pour after a day-long drizzle.
The water rushes in little tor-
rents down one side of a

gigantic rampart of sodded earth which zig-zags off before and be

NEAR VIEW OF A In the background can be seen the piling which is being

that will close the crevasse

the surface of a mile-wide stream into the semblance of brown stucco.

Standing on the dike, one may study mayor, the village doctor, the wealthy the roofs of a plantation home behind it. planter, the banker, every able-bodied Turning, one can stoop and dabble a man within a radius of miles, is packing hand into the muddy river, so near is it burlap sacks, filled with dirt. to the top of its barrier.

Above the queer chant of the negroes The smooth, true line of tawny water comes a shout from a convict guard, and green grass on the river side is rifle in hand. Before the gaze of the broken by an ugly box of raw pine which toilers, a bit of the dike further upstream projects into the stream an arm's length, sinks, at first gradually, an inch, two and parallels the embankment forty feet, inches, three inches. A yellow geyser and into this box, negro convicts in their spouts up in the road, forty feet behind striped garb, free laborers, the village the levee. Then the great wall of earth


folds back with a groan, and with a roar of victory the river leaps through.

A crevasse! Within an hour, the river has torn away both ends until the gap is two hundred feet wide. By morning, it will be four hundred feet wide, the plantation home, and a score of others, will be uninhabitable, and whites, blacks, mules and cattle will be camping on the levee, waiting rescue, while others, further back in the country, who could not be warned by

couriers who rode all night,

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