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Also has Civil War memorabilia. Thebes Gap Side trip: Go visit River Ridge Winery's hospitality, just north of Commerce. Take the Benton exit, go almost to the main part of Benton, and look for Route E, turning right, then east, in a residential area. It's easy to miss. If traffic permits it will , and leaves do not obstruct the view, stop on the overpass of I and study the expanse of flat horizon to the south.

You can see the curvature of the earth. The Ohio river flowed from left to right at the bottom of the hill. You'll quickly drop to the bottom of the hill and drive alongside hills to the north and flatland to the south.

You are driving on top of the Commerce Lineament, a seismic oddity that runs in a nearly straight line from Indiana to Arkansas. In past eras, it has seen serious quake activity, that churned soils of different eras into a big mixing bowl which is the hill. Scientists hired someone to cut trenches in that hill, and studied the heavily churned cross section of soils.

Sonar-type soundings confirm a big crack beneath your road. Seismic activity here 10, years ago probably helped the river break through the "Thebes gap", which allows the Mississippi to make a sharp EAST bend south of Cape, then to Cairo. Find Karnak and Tamms. Geologists suspect a large New Madrid quake in AD dropped the ground between these towns.

It filled back in, but the soil is different than in surrounding areas. The village of Commerce has no levee, and has a marker of how Lewis and Clark found the Tywappity Bottoms here. Back at I, Diebold Orchard sells fruit, apple cider, pastries, at the Benton exit. John Ordway, best journal-keeper of the Lewis and Clark expedition, returned to the Tywappity Bottom area and New Madrid, where he prospered by quickly owning apple and peach plantations, until the big quakes, which left him destitute.

A quake, a couple months before the Iben Browning media frenzy, was centered at New Hamburg, a little town just west, and along the Commerce lineament. If you visit it, you can probably eat very homestyle good food in the back of a local grocery.

Say hi to the couple who've run it for 40 years. A tavern across the street is regionally famous for good food. A bed and breakfast is at the end of town, with a pretty lake. The town of Kelso, just up the road, has a steak restaurant in an old bank, beside a beautiful Catholic church. Both towns are just north of Benton on US From the top of the "Benton Hill" of I just north of Benton exit, it seems you can see all the way to New Orleans across the flatland.

Note that the road actually dips a bit at the bottom of the hill, then comes back up, at the exit. This dip probably happened during the quakes. An elliptical sand boil of several hundred feet is a bit east. In the last 30 years, paleoseismologists have gotten serious about digging into the sand boils across the NMSZ. They've found shakes dating back to , even BC and further, even though the river has washed away much of the evidence.

You can drive from the east side of the Benton exit, or south from Commerce to Charleston, Mo. An magnitude 6.

This quake shook down buildings in Sikeston and messed up the top of the Cairo library, but did not claim any lives. Many scientists now believe the big ones of were high 6's to perhaps high 7's, probably not 8's.

Grab an eye-level view of the river at Commerce. River views between here and Cairo are hard to find. In , this side of the river was Spanish territory, with French, British and US forces all gathered nearby, wondering the outcome. If New Madrid hadn't had its shakes, it may have become larger than St. It was a thriving river port. Before the shakes, legend says drunk riverboat crewmen would enjoy stretching a cable across a street then mowing down anything and anybody in the way.

Cairo's dining isn't elegant, but very tasty. At the height of westward expansion, the Custom House housed a huge post office funneling mail to and from the west. Cairo at one time had about 15 pharmacies and still more taverns. There were once dreams of a series of canals through town and drawings that made it look like the parliament buildings of London. But early planners forgot that rivers rise. During the early part of the Civil War, Union troops at Cairo under supervision of Ulysses Grant built to 20, while 19 miles downriver Columbus-Belmont Confederates trained an equal number.

At the confluence of the nation's two largest rivers, you can camp Cairo city park if the water isn't up with riverboats passing at eye level on either side. Tie this trip to Wickliffe, Ky. Between Cairo and Cape Girardeau on the Illinois side Pull off where the large power line crosses, and admire. This is the "Thebes gap" probably made 10, years ago by shaking on the Commerce Lineament. Before that, the river did not pass here see above. Then take the small side road in to Thebes. See the dual-track rail bridge built in , still handling lots of rail traffic between Dallas and Chicago.

Perhaps 35 crossings per day. It was built to handle the new motor cars, as well, but that part was never added. The use of concrete pillars was new and questionable when built, but has stood the test of time and made it to be considered the strongest bridge on the Mississippi. Many runaway barges have struck a bridge pillar over the years with no damage to the sturdy structure. On the hill overlooking is an old stone courthouse where some say Lincoln tried a case or maybe just visited here, and runaway slave Dred Scott may have spent a night in the basement.

Open by appointment only. A small road runs under the Thebes bridge, and along the river, closed during high water. A clearing a mile south is where archeologists have investigated a settlement years before present. It's one of the first vestiges of civilization in North America , with "Dalton tools", meaningful to archeologists. The river was shallow in this five mile stretch of Thebes gap. Ancient folks could likely walk across on pitted limestone during low water. Young Mark Twain was a riverboat pilot whose boat was crippled here by hitting rocks, and barely made it to Cairo.

Olive Branch has a good local homestyle restaurant on the highway row of windows in the front. Just down the road is Horseshoe Lake, an "oxbow" lake probably made by the evolution of the Mississippi River, and known for fishing, camping. Mound City was a staging area for the north to fight the war.

Boats were built and repaired on the drydock rails. It could handle boats at once. It had a large stationary hospital where the grain bins are, now and a floating hospital which cared for and buried troops of blue and grey, black and white. The first Navy nurses were here, local midwives who could deal with seeing blood. More info from Cairo Custom House guides. You'll find a broad sweep view of the Ohio River and a restaurant with a few motel rooms to help enjoy the view.

Illness and frustration of Native Americans stopped it. Read about the Aaron Burr conspiracy. The dog's training quickly kicks in, and he begins to jump up and down on the officer's chest. The clip has gone viral on Twitter, racking up nearly 1. Noble selfless and always helping'.

It is worth its weight in gold. After several chest jumps the smart pooch places its ear to the man's mouth to see if he is breathing. With the officer successfully 'saved', the dog gets his well-earned reward. Madrid Police shared the clip on Twitter, saying Poncho 'did not hesitate for a moment'. The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline.

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Rare and candid collection of images show a solemn President George W. Police dog bounds into action and performs CPR to 'save her handler's life' when he plays dead Video shows heroic Poncho performing CPR on Madrid Police dog trainer In the clip, he jumps up and down on his chest before checking he is breathing Police shared clip saying he 'did not hesitate for a moment' to 'save' man's life By Dianne Apen-sadler For Mailonline Published: Share this article Share.

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