The iconic American river, the Mississippi is both provider and destroyer as this week's floods have proved.  2,348 miles long, it is the second longest river after the Missouri in the United States.  Combined, the two rivers' triangular drainage area covers close to 40% of the United States from the Rockies to the Appalachian Mountains and includes all or part of 31 states.  Long an important transportation artery of North America, Mississippi literally translates to father of waters in the native Algonquian language.

Let's take a quick photo journey down the Mississippi from Minneapolis to New Orleans.