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Old Mar 29, 2008, 1:24 PM   #1
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The significance of this one will take a little explanation, and an extra photo. The "Then" photo is of an original oil painting of Case Ford on the Little Red River in North Central Arkansas. The ford was constructed by my grandfather and some of his neighbors who lived on the South side of the river so they could access farm lands on the North side. Constructed right after World War II, the ford replaced a rope ferry that had gone out of business. As a child, I remember riding in his old pickup across the ford with water going around the truck, and standing on the lower outcropping of rock to the left with my father while we used it as a fishing pier.

The original painting was given to my grandfather by the artist and now hangs on my wall.


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Old Mar 29, 2008, 1:26 PM   #2
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Today, access to the Northern side of the river is gained across Greers Ferry Dam, dedicated in 1963 (JFK's last trip outside Washington before Dallas). Case Ford (along with 900 acres of my grandfather's farm land) is under about 200 feet of water in the lake formed by the dam.


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Old Mar 29, 2008, 1:31 PM   #3
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However, in taking the shot of the dam for this challenge, I decided to drive on down to the river below for a couple of shots and was struck by the water levels, low enough for fly fishermen. I couldn't help but think of the flooding along the White Riverthat devastated the farm lands and farm towns of east and southeast Arkansas this week and contrast the peaceful nature of this scene with how much worse the floods could have been without Greers Ferry Dam since the Little Red is one of the largest tributaries flowing into the white and would have been raging on its own in the dam's absence.


(Edit: Note the bright green vegetation in the foreground. This is normally part of the river bottom during power generation, which has been suspended to bring flow levels down to help with the flooding downstream.)
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Old Mar 29, 2008, 7:23 PM   #4
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Thanks for the history of the site. The difference between the old ford and the modern dam is amazing.

Cal

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Old Mar 30, 2008, 12:00 AM   #5
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Trojansoc,

Lovely comparison. Dams and levees have contributed so much to our lifestyle that we often take them for granted and occasionally heap criticism on them.

Very idyllic fishing spot.

Aloha and thanks for sharing.
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Old Mar 30, 2008, 6:02 AM   #6
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Great photos. I love the history of it. Your memories of the ford are priceless.
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