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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Near La Crosse in La Crosse County, Wisconsin — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)
 

The Upper Mississippi

 
 
The Upper Mississippi Marker image. Click for full size.
By Keith L, June 23, 2008
1. The Upper Mississippi Marker
Inscription.  From Lake Itasca, Minnesota, to Cairo, Illinois, the upper Mississippi River flows through America's heartland for over 1100 miles. Its currents have borne the Indian's canoe, the explorer's dugout, and the trader's packet. Jacques Marquette, Louis Jolliet, and Zebulon Pike tested its strength. Mark Twain gave it life in literature. Paddle-wheelers by the hundreds ferried lesser-known passengers over its waters during the halcyon days of steamboating in the 19th century. Into the Great River pour the St. Croix, Chippewa, Black, Wisconsin, Rock, Illinois, Missouri, and Ohio. Along its banks have flourished St. Paul, Winona, La Crosse, Davenport, Keokuk, Quincy, and St. Louis. For a time diminished in importance by the railroads, the Great River came back into its own in the 20th century through dredging and damming. The present nine-foot channel and a series of locks and dams allow 300-foot barges to transport coal, cement, grain, and other products vital to the region's economic well-being. Imposing in size and beauty, violent and muddy in flood-stage, calm and serene on a summer morn, the Great River sustains life and livelihood within itself,
The Upper Mississippi Marker image. Click for full size.
By Paul Fehrenbach, May 30, 2017
2. The Upper Mississippi Marker
The rest area was recently redeveloped and the marker repositioned. It is just north of the new building.
along its banks, and upward in the hinterlands east and west.
 
Erected 1980 by the Wisconsin Historical Society. (Marker Number 264.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Waterways & Vessels. In addition, it is included in the Wisconsin Historical Society series list.
 
Location. 43° 51.545′ N, 91° 16.238′ W. Marker is near La Crosse, Wisconsin, in La Crosse County. Marker can be reached from Interstate 90 at milepost 1 west of Lakeshore Drive, on the right when traveling east. Marker is at eastbound Rest Area 31 on French Island — Wisconsin’s only rest area located on an island. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2323 Lakeshore Drive, La Crosse WI 54603, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Major General C.C. Washburn (within shouting distance of this marker); Taming the Wild River (approx. 1.7 miles away in Minnesota); Minnesota’s “Fashionable Tour” / Welcome to Minnesota (approx. 1.7 miles away in Minnesota); Theodore Foss Memorial Highway (approx. 1.7 miles away in Minnesota); Campbell Cemetery G.A.R. Memorial (approx. 2.1 miles away); Red Cloud Park (approx.
The Upper Mississippi Marker image. Click for full size.
By Keith L, June 23, 2008
3. The Upper Mississippi Marker
2.6 miles away); Sidewheel Riverboat War Eagle (approx. 2.9 miles away); Spence Park (approx. 3.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in La Crosse.
 
Also see . . .
1. About the Upper Mississippi River System. "The history of navigation on the Upper Mississippi River System goes back to the 1820's, when Congress authorized construction of a canal connecting Lake Michigan and the Illinois River..." (Submitted on January 24, 2009.) 

2. Upper Mississippi River. "In terms of geologic and hydrographic history, the Upper Mississippi is a portion of the now-extinct Glacial River Warren which carved the valley of the Minnesota River..." (Submitted on January 24, 2009.) 
 
The Upper Mississippi Marker image. Click for full size.
By Paul Fehrenbach, May 30, 2017
4. The Upper Mississippi Marker
The rest area was recently redeveloped and the marker repositioned. It is just north of the new building.
Refuge Sign <i>(along nearby hiking trail)</i> image. Click for full size.
By Keith L, June 23, 2008
5. Refuge Sign (along nearby hiking trail)
Upper Mississippi River
National Wildlife and Fish Refuge
The magnificent refuge before you was established in 1924 to preserve Upper Mississippi River bottom lands for fish, migratory birds, other wildlife and people. Today the refuge encompasses over 200,000 acres of water, marsh, wooded islands, forest, and prairie spanning 261 river miles from Wabasha, MN to Rock Island, IL.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 11, 2017. It was originally submitted on January 24, 2009, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 1,180 times since then and 15 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on January 24, 2009, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin.   2. submitted on June 1, 2017, by Paul Fehrenbach of Germantown, Wisconsin.   3. submitted on January 24, 2009, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin.   4. submitted on June 1, 2017, by Paul Fehrenbach of Germantown, Wisconsin.   5. submitted on January 24, 2009, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.
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May. 29, 2020