The Control of Nature Test | Mid-Book Test - Medium

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This test consists of 5 multiple choice questions, 5 short answer questions, and 10 short essay questions.

Multiple Choice Questions

1. From St. Louis down to the Atchafalaya, General Sands takes note of what?
(a) Number of private boats.
(b) Storms.
(c) Complaints.
(d) Number of bird colonies.

2. Sympathetically, who does McPhee blame for destructive actions against the natural order of the environment?
(a) Foreign policy.
(b) The Executive branch of government.
(c) The United Nations.
(d) Man.

3. In the early 1800s, private plantation owners in Louisiana levee riverbanks to:
(a) Protect their land.
(b) Store river water.
(c) Irrigate their land.
(d) Combine river water.

4. During high spring waters, what danger forms unseen beneath turbulent waters at the outflow to the Atchafalaya?
(a) An enormous hole larger and deeper than a football stadium.
(b) Treacherous new rip currents.
(c) A crack in a gate of the control structure.
(d) The partial collapse of one of the pylons.

5. The livelihood of approximately how many people is affected by the Old River Control?
(a) 3 thousand.
(b) 13 hundred.
(c) 3 million.
(d) 31 thousand.

Short Answer Questions

1. When the author recalls his first time in the Atchafalaya swamps with Charles Fryling in 1980, what does he fondly remember?

2. After the U.S. Army Corps takes control of the Atchafalaya, Old Cajun bayou life is:

3. Norris F. Rabalais was born and raised in what Louisiana parish?

4. On General Sand's floating conference boat, Oliver Houck is the only board member who is active in what?

5. Congress mandates that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers survey the Mississippi and tributaries in order to assure and improve what?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is Major General Sands' concluding thoughts regarding the Old River Control Structure?

2. Describe some of the challenges New Orleans faces because of its geographical location.

3. In the 1700s, why did people settle in New Orleans and surrounding areas despite the region clearly being a floodplain?

4. What is the Old River Control project developed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers?

5. What are some of the main points the author tries to make through this work of historical nonfiction?

6. What are some of the predominant problems in the regions populated near the Atchafalaya and Mississippi rivers?

7. Describe what McPhee writes about Morgan City, Louisiana.

8. Why does the author state that ever since the Corps took control of the Atchafalaya, the river's name means "collision" to him?

9. What is the goal of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers with regards to the Atchafalya and Mississippi rivers?

10. Explain how the Mississippi River forms Louisiana over many centuries.

(see the answer keys)

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