Ron & Elena's 2007-2010 Travels travel blog

Today we visited a couple more sites along our great river road...


The museum and visitor center.

Trying to see these mounds from the ground is not so easy...




We really enjoyed this delightful little museum.

Local plantation home moved to this site.


Share croppers church moved to this site.

Share croppers commissary.

Share croppers cabin. Audio recordings inside were interviews with folks that had...






A bale of cotton weights about 500 lbs.


Some views inside the museum. Displays told the story of cotton farming...


Early cotton gin that would have been used on a plantation.

Early mechanical picker.

Cut-away to show how a cotton picker works. The key parts were...


Cotton gin that was used at a commercial gin where farmers would...












(Ron Writing) This morning we continued east on I-20 a short distance to LA-17 and then headed north on LA-17 to the small town of Epps, LA. Near Epps is the Poverty Point Earthworks. Poverty Point (name of the plantation that was formerly on this property) is one of the oldest and most elaborate “Indian Mounds” in North America. There are many Indian mounds in Louisiana. The state acquired this property and now operates a museum and gives tours of the park.

We spent some time in the museum watching a film, looking at artifacts that have been found here, and learning about Indian mounds. We also took a guided tour on a tram and climbed to the top of the highest of the mounds, about 70 feet. These mounds were built around 1,500 BC. Huts were built on top of the low circular mounds while the higher mounds were used for ceremonial purposes. There is no evidence that they were used as burial mounds.

Our route then continued north on LA-17 to Forest, LA where we turned east on LA-582 to Lake Providence. Lake Providence is right on the west bank of the Mississippi River and was once a prime cotton growing area. This is still an agricultural area and some cotton is still grown but the main cash crops are corn and beans. The Louisiana State Cotton Museum is located in Lake Providence. We spent a couple hours this afternoon touring it and learning quite a bit about the history of cotton in this area and how it related to the Civil War and the whole US economy. We also learned what life was like on small plantations and how share croppers lived. There were displays describing how cotton was farmed before the introduction of mechanized pickers and cotton gins. Other displays showed how mechanical cotton pickers work and how cotton gins get the seeds out of the cotton balls. We found it all very interesting and nicely presented. Another of those great little museums we just love to tour.

From Lake Providence we headed north on US-66, crossed into the southeast corner of Arkansas, and continued to Fairview, AR where we turned east on US-82, once again crossed the Mississippi River, and drove a few miles northeast to Greenville, MS. One of the worst floods in US history occurred here in 1927 when the Mississippi River breached a levee just north of town. We are spending the night here in the Wal*Mart parking lot. There is no Verizon service here and the cell modem signal I connect to won’t actually transfer data. Very unusual symptoms. I guess I’ll wait until tomorrow to post this blog.

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