Old Man River prepares to strike again

As the roiling waters of the Mississippi River continue to wend their way south, those in the know are calling this flood the second-worst in US history, behind only the Great Mississippi Flood of 1927.

In mid-April of that year, the great river broke through a levee a few miles north of Greenville, Miss., sending a wall of water hurtling down Main Street and forever changing the area’s landscape.

Homes were crushed, sharecroppers’ farms were swept away and hundreds died.

The flood eventually affected Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Tennessee, Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas. Arkansas was hardest hit, with 14 percent of its territory covered by floodwaters.

By May 1927, the Mississippi River below Memphis, Tenn., reached a width of 60 miles.

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Monet, Vlaminck works bring $45 million

Paintings by Claude Monet and Maurice de Vlaminck each sold for $22.5 million during an auction of Impressionist and modern art by Christie’s last week in New York.

The Vlaminck landscape, “Paysage de Banlieue” from 1905, brought a record price for the artist at auction. “Paysage de Banlieue” had last been up at auction at Christie’s in 1994, where it fetched $6.8 million, according to the New York Times.

The Monet work, “Les Peupliers,” from 1891,was also familiar to Christie’s. It had last been up for sale there in November 2000, when it brought $7 million, the Times reported.

“Les Peupliers,” is the largest from Monet’s famed paintings depicting poplar trees executed during his years in Giverny, France.

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