Comprehensive Concept: Stories of the Delta


The goal of this concept is to illustrate the interrelationships between the "Stories of the Delta" and the historic sites, museums, festivals, and natural areas that could be organized to preserve, protect, and present to visitors the rich and diverse natural and cultural heritage of the Delta.


The "Stories of the Delta" — the people, places, and events that bring this region of the country to national attention — form a complex yet cohesive picture of the Delta’s natural, cultural, historic, and ancient resources. These are the stories or themes related to the Delta that Visitors and residents alike should understand in order to appreciate the impact this region has had on the formation of our national character. These stories combined with the appropriate historic sites, museums, festivals, and natural areas form the base from which historic preservation, heritage tourism, and economic revitalization efforts could be initiated.

Map of locations of interest in the lower Mississippi Delta region

Resources would be drawn from across the region and would illustrate the interrelationships between people, places, and events in the Delta. Emphasis would be placed on utilizing existing resources and criteria for choosing appropriate sites and resources would need to be developed. Criteria for selecting sites and resources might be related to specific site characteristics. These characteristics might include the significance of the site/resource the site/resource’s relationship to a specific "Story of the Delta," the existence of a visitor- ready facility, present and potential interpretive opportunities, access to the region’s major transportation arteries and proximity to other sites/resources related to the "Stories of the Delta."

As stated earlier, the resources presented in this comprehensive concept are not the only resources that could be considered in this configuration. The listed resources represent a cross section of the sites, museums, festival locations, and natural areas that could be used to illustrate the interrelationships between the "Stories of the Delta" and the resources available to tell those stories.


River Towns
1. Ste. Genevieve, Missouri
2. Cairo, Illinois
3. Memphis, Tennessee
4. Hickman, Kentucky
5. Helena, Arkansas
6. Vicksburg, Mississippi
7. New Orleans, Louisiana
Geophysical Transformation
8. Reelfoot Lake, Tennessee
9. Crowley's Ridge Parkway, Arkansas
Manipulating the River for Navigation and Flood Control
• The mainline levee system extends along both banks of the Mississippi River from approximately Cape Girardeau, Missouri, to the Gulf of Mexico, except where tributaries intersect the river and high ground parallels it. The levees along the south banks of the Arkansas River and the Red Rivers in the Atchafalaya Basin.
• The Little River Drainage District of Southeast Missouri, from Cape Girardeau, Missouri southward to the Missouri-Arkansas state line
• Floodways to divert excess flows:
10. Birds Point to New Madrid, Missouri floodway
11. Morganza and West Atchafalaya floodways in Louisiana
12. Bonnet Carre Spillway upstream of New Orleans
13. Waterways Experiment Station Visitor Center (principal research and testing laboratory of the Corps of Engineers) Vicksburg, Mississippi
46. Huxtable Pumping Station (Marianna, Arkansas)
• Colement Mineral Collection (Marion, Kentucky)
Natural Resources
14. Little Grand Canyon Area (Carbondale, Illinois)
15. Henderson Sloughs (Uniontown, Kentucky)
16. White River Sugarberry Natural Area, White River National Wildlife Refuge (Helena, Arkansas)
17. Louisiana Purchase State Park (between Brinkley and Marvel, Arkansas)
18. Delta National Forest, Green Ash, Overcup Oak, and Sweetgum Research National Areas (Yazoo City, Mississippi)
19. Delta National Wildlife Refuge (Venice, Louisiana)
• Westvaco- Columbus Bottom Wildlife Management Area (Frankfort, Kentucky)


American Indian
• Trail of Tears National Historic Trail (Tennessee, Kentucky, Missouri, Arkansas, Mississippi)
• Natchez Trace Parkway (Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee)
1. Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians (Philadelphia, Mississippi)
2. Chucalissa Indian Village (Memphis, Tennessee)
3. Arkansas Post National Memorial, Menard/ Hodges Archeological Site (Gillett, Arkansas)
4. Pinson Mounds State Archeological Site (Pinson, Tennessee)
5. Winterville Mounds State Park and Museum (Washington County, Mississippi)
6. Marksville State Commemorative Area (Marksville, Louisiana)
7. Tunica-Biloxi Indians of Louisiana (Marksville, Louisiana)
8. Coushatta Tribe (Elton, Louisiana)
9. The Chitimacha Tribe (Charenton, Louisiana)
10. Jena Band of Choctaw (Jena, Louisiana)
43. Grand Village of the Natchez (Natchez, Mississippi)
45. Wickliffe Mounds (Wickliffe, Kentucky)
47. Arkansas State University Museum (Jonesboro, Arkansas)
• Parkin Archeological State Park (Parkin, Arkansas)
• Hampson Museum State Park (Wilson, Arkansas)
French and Spanish Influences
11. Great River Road State Park (Rosedale, Mississippi)
12. Arkansas Post National Memorial (Gillett, Arkansas)
13. Parkin Archeological State Park (Parkin, Arkansas)
14. French Colonial Historic District (Prairie Du Rocher, Illinois)
15. Cape Girardeau River Heritage Museum (Cape Girardeau, Missouri)
16. Historic Ste. Genevieve (Ste. Genevieve, Missouri)
17. Vieux Carre Historic District (New Orleans, Louisiana)
Cajun Culture
18. Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve (New Orleans, Louisiana)
• Prairie Acadian Cultural Center (Eunice, Louisiana)
• Wetlands Acadian Cultural Center (Lafayette, Louisiana)
• Acadian Cultural Center (Lafayette, Louisiana)
19. Acadiana Visitor Center (Opelousas, Louisiana)
Creole Culture
20. Natchitoches Historic District, Badin-Roque House (Natchitoches, Louisiana)
21. Kate Chopin House and Bayou Folk Museum (Cloutierville, Louisiana)
42. Cane River Creole National Historical Park, Cane River National Heritage Area (Natchitoches, Louisiana)
African-American Culture
22. Mound Bayou, Mississippi
23. Helena Cultural Center (Helena, Arkansas)
24. Floyd Brown-Fargo Agricultural School Museum (Fargo, Arkansas)
25. Madison, Arkansas
26. Cairo, Illinois
27. Beale Street Historic District (Memphis, Tennessee)
28. Delta Blues Museum (Clarksdale, Mississippi)
29. China Grove Plantation (Natchez, Mississippi)
30. Woodville Historical Museum, William Grant Still (Woodville, Mississippi)
31. Lehman Store Building, Historic Donaldsonville Museum Donaldsonville, Louisiana)
32. River Road African American Museum (Arrow, Louisiana)
33. Melrose Plantation (Melrose, Louisiana)
34. New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park (New Orleans, Louisiana)
41. Arna Bontemps African American Museum (Lafayette, Louisiana)
44. William Johnson House, Natchez National Historical Park (Natchez, Mississippi)
48. Delta Studies Center, ASU (Jonesboro, Arkansas)
• Delta Cultural Center (Helena, Arkansas)
Other Cultural Influences
35. Ozark Folk Center (Mountain View, Arkansas)
36. Adsmore Living History Museum (Princeton, Kentucky)
37. American Italian Museum and Library (New Orleans, Louisiana)
38. Saxon Lutheran Memorial (Frohna, Missouri)
39. Museum of the Southern Jewish Experience (Utica, Mississippi)
40. Buchanan Street Historic District (Hickman, Kentucky)
• Delta Cultural Center (Helena, Arkansas)
• Museum of the American Quilter’s Society (Paducah, Kentucky)


1-8 Civil War Sites
1. Shiloh National Military Park (Shiloh, Tennessee)
2.Corinth, Mississippi
3. Fort Pillow State Historic Area (Fulton, Tennessee)
4. Columbus-Belmont Battlefield State Park (Columbus, Kentucky)
5. Vicksburg National Military Park (Vicksburg, Mississippi)
6. Port Gibson, Mississippi
7. Jackson, Mississippi
8. Pea Ridge National Military Park (Pea Ridge, Arkansas)
9. National Civil Rights Museum (Memphis, Tennessee)
10. Farish Street Historic District (Jackson, Mississippi)
11. Little Rock Central High School (Little Rock, Arkansas)
12. Southern Tenant Farmers Union (Marked Tree, Arkansas, and Memphis, Tennessee)
• Arkansas Territorial Restoration (Little Rock, Arkansas)
• Old State House Museum (Little Rock, Arkansas)


• River Transportation and River Towns throughout the Mississippi River System
1. Consolidated Grain and Barge Company (Mound City, Illinois)
2. Stuttgart Agricultural Museum (Stuttgart, Arkansas)
3. The Homeplace - 1850 (Golden Pond, Kentucky)
4. Cottonlandia Museum (Greenwood, Mississippi)
5. Fargo Agricultural School Museum (Fargo, Arkansas)
6. LSU Rural Life Museum (Baton Rouge, Louisiana)
7. Louisiana Forestry Museum/ Political Museum and Hall of Fame (Winnfield, Louisiana)
8. Cotton Row Walking Tour (Memphis, Tennessee)
9. Arkansas Oil and Brine Museum (Smackover, Arkansas)

Last updated: November 16, 2017