Trihalomethane formation potentials were determined for the chlorination of water samples from the Mississippi, Missouri, and Ohio Rivers. Samples were collected during the summer and fall of 1991 and the spring of 1992 at 12 locations on the Mississippi from New Orleans, LA, to Minneapolis, MN, and on the Missouri and Ohio 1.6 km upstream from their confluences with the Mississippi. Formation potentials were determined as a function of pH and initial free-chlorine concentration. Chloroform concentrations decreased with distance downstream and approximately paralleled the decrease of the dissolved organic-carbon concentration. Bromide concentrations were 3.7-5.7 times higher for the Missouri and 1.4-1.6 times higher for the Ohio than for the Mississippi above their confluences, resulting in an overall increase of the bromide concentration with distance downstream. Variations of the concentrations of the brominated trihalomethanes with distance downstream approximately paralleled the variation of the bromide concentration. Concentrations of all four trihalomethanes increased as the pH increased. Concentrations of chloroform and bromodichloromethane increased slightly and the concentration of bromoform decreased as the initial free-chlorine concentration increased; the chlorodibromomethane concentration had little dependence on the free-chlorine concentration.