Tombigbee River

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The Tombigbee River is a tributary of the Mobile River, approximately 400 mi (644 long), in the U.S. states of Mississippi and Alabama. It is one of two major rivers, along with the Alabama River, that unite to form the short Mobile River before it empties into Mobile Bay on the Gulf of Mexico. The Tombigbee watershed encompasses much of the rural coastal plain of western Alabama and northeastern Mississippi, flowing generally southward. The river provides one of the principal routes of commercial navigation in the southern United States, navigable along much of its length through locks and connected in its upper reaches to the Tennessee River via the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway.

Description

The river begins in northeastern Mississippi in Itawamba County. Historically, the beginning of the river was in northern Monroe County, by the confluence of and Town Creek (also known as West Fork Tombigbee River) and East Fork Tombigbee River. Today, however, what was once known as the east fork is now designated as the Tombigbee itself.

It flows south through Aberdeen Lake near Aberdeen, and Columbus Lake near Columbus. It flows through Aliceville Lake on the Mississippi-Alabama border, then generally SSE across western Alabama in a highly meandering course, past Gainesville and Demopolis, where it is joined from the northeast by the Black Warrior River. South of Demopolis it flows generally south across southwestern Alabama, past Jackson. It joins the Alabama from the north on the Mobile-Baldwin county line, approximately 30 mi (48 km) north of Mobile, to form the Mobile River.

After the completion of the Tennessee-Tombigee Waterway in 1985, much of the middle course of the river in northwestern Mississippi was diverted into the new straightened channel. Above Aberdeen Lake, the waterway flows alongside the original course of the river.

In addition to the Black Warrior, the river is joined by the Buttahatchie River from the east north of Columbus, Mississippi. Approximately 10 mi (16 km) north of Gainesville it is joined from the north by the Sipsey River. At Gainesville it is joined from the west by the Noxubee River.

The Choctaw National Wildlife Refuge is along the river in southwestern Alabama, approximately 20 mi (32 km) northwest of Jackson.

See also

References

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