Grant Barrett gbarrett at MONICKELS.COM
Fri Dec 29 20:22:23 UTC 2000

>To this very day there is a stretch of bayou along the Miss. near
>called "The Sny."  It is I think even on road maps.


> Sni Island is a separate occurrence and is identified as "A
>portion of the former river bottom on the Mississippi River that today is exposed
>of a change of course in the river."

Sni Island in Marion County Missouri, of which Hannibal is the largest town, may be
the same thing Tim Frazer refers to, as per this extract from the book"Lighting Out
for the Territory: Reflections on Mark Twain and American Culture" by Shelley Fisher

"In 1847, when Twain was eleven, a runaway slave who belonged to a man named Neriam
Todd swam across the river and hid in the swampy thickets of Sny Island, on the
Illinois side of the Mississippi... Some woodchoppers chased the slave into a part of the
swamp called Bird Slough..."

On the other hand, Tim Frazer is talking about *swampy land on the Missouri side*,
not a real island on the Illinois side (although with the Mississippi River farms,
islands, swamps and river bottom change roles often enough to make the county clerk's
job difficult).

In looking further at the USGS site, I see that there is also The Sny Basin (the The
appears always capitalized) which refers to a rather large drainage area (watershed)
in eastern Missouri including five counties and 13 water drainage measurement
stations. This, I gather, is an extension of the Tim's Sny bayou. The map below shows,
finally, that The Sny, in fact, spans the Mississippi.

I didn't turn up The Sny in my first search at the USGS and this had me a bit
confused. The capital T on The should have been a clue. A search at under "The Sny" turns up:

Feature Name: The Sny
Feature Type: channel
State:  Illinois
County:         Adams
USGS 7.5' x 7.5' Map: Marblehead
Latitude:       394714N
Longitude:      0912108W

Feature Name: The Sny Cutoff
Feature Type: canal
State:  Illinois
County:         Pike
USGS 7.5' x 7.5' Map: Summer Hill
Latitude:       393011N
Longitude:      0905918W

More Sny:

Missouri NWIS-W Data Retrieval page

The Sny Levee District

Newspaper Extracts from 1880 that mention The Sny Levee

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