Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Benchmark Blasterz
N 32° 21.223 W 090° 52.900
15S E 699335 N 3581616
Quick Description: The landlocked M/V MISSISSIPPI IV, a former flagship of the Mississippi River Commission inspection corps AND also a workboat for the Corps of Engineers Memphis District, is now part of the Lower Mississippi River Museum in downtown Vicksburg MS
Location: Mississippi, United States
Date Posted: 9/18/2014 7:22:22 AM
Waymark Code: WMMGN1
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Queens Blessing
Views: 0

Long Description:
The M/V MISSISSIPPI IV is a former towboat used by the US Corps of Engineers throughout the Memphis district to move stuff around on the river. She was also the flagship of the Mississippi River Commission (a separate agency of the COE) which used her as a river inspection boat.

In service for over 30 years, she was decommissioned in 1993 and is now on static display (and available for weddings) at the Lower Mississippi River Museum.

A sign in front of the M/V MISSISSIPPI reads as follows:

"Commissioned in 1961, the Mississippi IV plied the Mississippi River for more than 30 years. Though it was the fourth Corps vessel to bear the name “Mississippi,” she was the first to employ diesel power, and this shift brought with it the designation “Motor Vessel”. Mississippi IV marked the advance of new technologies of the 1950s; steamboat manufacturers were turning to newer, more powerful diesel engines and producing fewer steamboat replacement parts, making it increasingly difficult to maintain steam-driven vessels. Although signaling the end of the steam era on the Mississippi River and the demise of the 19th-century technology that brought prosperity to the Mississippi Valley, Mississippi IV fulfilled the vision of the Corps for a workboat with a larger towing capacity and improved handling in rough waters, and maintained the needs of the MRC.

Mississippi IV served a dual role as both a workboat and an ambassador to citizens of the Lower Mississippi Valley. As a towboat, the vessel was a common sight along the Mississippi River as it delivered equipment and materials to Corps project sites generally administered by the Corps’ Memphis District. As a public ambassador, the vessel also hosted the public meetings of the Mississippi River Commission (MRC) during the Commission’s biannual inspection tours from Illinois to coastal Louisiana.

This dual role as Corps workhorse and MRC flagship required a vessel that combined functionality with public space. Mississippi IV utilized new technology and innovative design to meet the needs of the Corps, the MRC, and the general public.

On April 8, 1993, “Decommissioning-Commissioning Day,” the Corps retired Mississippi IV. The vessel was stored for more than a decade while plans developed for the Lower Mississippi River Museum to be built in Vicksburg, Mississippi. Mississippi IV was cosmetically restored in Morgan City, Louisiana, and moved by barge to Vicksburg in 2007. Now gently perched atop a concrete cradle near the waterfront, Mississippi IV continues her role as a public ambassador as a centerpiece of the Lower Mississippi River Museum which opened in 2012."

From the Lower Mississippi Valley Museum website: (visit link)

"Flagships of the MRC

The vessels which have served as the Mississippi always pulled “double duty” serving both as a Corps work vessel and as the MRC’s river inspection vessel and public meeting venue. During the traditional high-water and low-water seasons each spring and summer, the members of the MRC conduct inspection trips and public meetings aboard the Mississippi at various locations along the length of the Mississippi River.

These gatherings enable the public to bring their views and concerns before the MRC in an open forum and give interested parties a greater voice in shaping federal policy.

The Mississippi


The first Mississippi was a paddle-wheel steamer built in St. Louis in 1882. In April of that year—just after a devastating spring flood—the vessel hosted the Mississippi River Commission (MRC) on its first inspection tour. Struck by fire in 1893, the vessel was repaired and remained in service. The vessel hosted President Theodore Roosevelt on a 1907 tour, and President William Howard Taft took passage in 1909. By 1919 the Commission decided to retire the aging steamer and began outfitting another vessel for inspection service. The Corps rebuilt Mississippi for towboat service and renamed the vessel Piomingo.

The Steamer Mississippi II


The Steamer Mississippi II was built in 1899 as the dredge tender Leota. She was noted for her trim lines and great speed– qualities that would serve the MRC well. The MRC acquired the paddle-wheel steamer in 1920 and sent it to New Orleans, where workers razed the hull and installed new boilers. Shortly thereafter the Mississippi II entered service with the MRC. The vessel’s machinery, however, proved unworkable, and in 1926 the MRC ordered a new steamer to be constructed.

The Mississippi III


Built new in 1926, the Mississippi III steamer was commissioned in 1927. The vessel was built from the keel up and included new boilers and machinery. The cabin—crucial space for the MRC’s inspection tours—was salvaged from Mississippi II and installed over the new hull. Rudder and deck modifications improved the vessel’s capacity as a towboat. The Texas-deck steamer had once been the most powerful of those operating on the Mississippi River and helped sustain the colorful traditions and background of the golden age of steamboats on the river.

The M/V Mississippi IV


Mississippi IV was the first diesel-powered vessel to serve the MRC and signaled the end of steam power on the river. Specifically designed and built to meet the needs of the Corps and the MRC, Mississippi IV provided an immense amount of power, towing capacity, and suitable space for public meetings and inspection trips. Nicknamed “Big Shaky” due to strong vibrations felt throughout the vessel, she was built with a steel superstructure and powered by two 8-cylinder Nordberg engines, each capable of developing 1,860 horsepower. Adjustable-pitch propellers greatly improved her maneuverability in treacherous river currents.

The Mississippi V


The Mississippi V is the current flagship and inspection vessel for the MRC, hosting members of the community during spring high-water meetings and late summer low-water meetings. The Mississippi V also serves as one of the most powerful workboats for the Corps. Approximately 90 percent of the year she can be found working along the Mississippi River and throughout the Mississippi Valley watershed in service to the Corps, and in support of its mat sinking operations."
Is there a tour: yes

If boat is a garden what was planted in it: Not listed

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Benchmark Blasterz visited M/V MISSISSIPPI IV -- Vicksburg MS 9/20/2014 Benchmark Blasterz visited it