Skip to Main Content
Book Chapter

Terrain evaluation

Published:
January 01, 2019

Abstract

About 2000 years ago, the Mississippi River avulsed westwards and captured the Red River of the South, uprooting vegetation and causing bank instability, resulting in a series of log jams known as the Great Red River Raft. The Great Raft presented a major navigation challenge during the settlement of the Red River Valley from the seventeenth century until its removal in the 1890s. The Great Raft extended c. 100–300 km up-river from Natchitoches, Louisiana to the Louisiana–Arkansas boundary. In the nineteenth century, it contributed to a major military failure by the Union Army and Navy during the 1864 Red River Campaign of the American Civil War. While planning the Red River Campaign, Union commanders made tactical errors by overlooking unique geological aspects of the Red River, including its flashy nature, high sediment load, anastomosing channels and rapids. The Confederates used their knowledge of the Great Raft and the Red River’s morphology to attack the Union’s river fleet while in a position of restricted manoeuverability. The Confederates used the topographically higher defensive positions of natural levee deposits along the Red River to keep the Union’s land and naval forces from supporting each other during the Campaign.

You do not currently have access to this article.

Figures & Tables

Contents

Military Aspects of Geology: Fortification, Excavation and Terrain Evaluation
CONTAINS OPEN ACCESS

E.P.F. Rose
E.P.F. Rose
Royal Holloway, University of London, UK
Search for other works by this author on:
J. Ehlen
J. Ehlen
formerly US Army Engineer Research and Development Center, USA
Search for other works by this author on:
U. L. Lawrence
U. L. Lawrence
Capita Property & Infrastructure Ltd, UK
Search for other works by this author on:
Geological Society of London
Volume
473
ISBN electronic:
9781786204189
Publication date:
January 01, 2019

GeoRef

References

Related

Citing Books via

Close Modal
This Feature Is Available To Subscribers Only

Sign In or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal