Since the beginning of the Americas the rivers have been a very important source of transportation. If not for the river the shipment of goods would have taken a very long time and would have been almost impossible through the dense forests of the New World. The Mississippi in time has been used for transportation. The Native Americans used the river as a source of food and also to get to prime hunting spots. When the Europeans came, the Mississippi was used to travel from fort to fort and also to trade with the Indians. Now the Mississippi is not used as a transport anymore. With the invention of automobiles and airplanes the use of canoeing down a river to get from "point A” to "point B” is pretty much a waste of time. The river is now used as a recreational fun. Water skiing, Jet skiing, tubing, boating, and wakeboarding are now the biggest reason to go out on the river. The Mississippi is also a source of drinking water for the Twin Cities and suburban areas. A big reason to be concerned for the quality of the water is because we drink that water. Even though it is purified I don't like the idea of drinking something that may be unhealthy to swim in. Also we need to be concerned so that our kids wont get to complain about what we could have done to help the water quality when we were in charge. With bad water quality you may also kill all the fish which would severely effect the natural ecosystem. It is all ready being said that you don't want to eat too many fish out of the Mississippi because you could contract mercury poisoning. The watershed is an area that drains rain and snowmelt into a river. This is a big way that river get polluted. The farmers put chemicals on their field and when it rains the chemicals wash off and drain into the river. At the beginning the main reason why I joined this project is because I thought it would be the easiest project. But now that I participated in the project it was fun too.