National Civil Rights Museum

Top choice museum in Memphis

Image by Mike Brown Getty Images

Housed across the street from the Lorraine Motel, where the Martin Luther King Jr was fatally shot on April 4, 1968, is the gut-wrenching National Civil Rights Museum. Five blocks south of Beale St, this museum’s extensive exhibits and detailed timeline chronicle the struggle for African American freedom and equality. Both Dr King’s cultural contribution and his assassination serve as prisms for looking at the Civil Rights movement, its precursors and its continuing impact on American life.

The turquoise exterior of the 1950s motel and two preserved interior rooms remain much as they were at the time of King's death.