As visitors amble along the Meadow Trail at the northwest end of the Cypress Preserve, they will see a tall mast projecting from the ground. This mast is the preserve’s “flood pole.” The dated, color coded lines circumscribing the pole indicate the high-water marks of the major Mississippi River floods occurring in 1927, 1937, 1973, 2008, and 2011.
Herbert Huddleston, a charter trustee of the Cypress Preserve Trust, conceived this project, one which presents the magnitude of several major floods in an easily visualized manner.
The Great Flood of 1927 was the most destructive in the history of the entire nation, violently breaching the levee at Mounds Landing, 12 miles north of Greenville, and flooding an area that was l00 miles long and 50 miles wide in Mississippi alone. More recently, in May of 2011, the Mississippi River crested at nearly the same level as that of the 1927 crest, but modern, reconstructed levees kept the protected side of the levee in the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta dry, as it had done in other major flood years of 1937, 1973, and 2008.