Visit the Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel


Museum TEMPORARILY closed due to COVID Directive

Given the recent Shelby County (TN) Health Department’s Directive 16 issued December 21, 2020, and the spike in COVID cases in the area, the National Civil Rights Museum is temporarily closed.  However, we’re closely monitoring the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and instituting preventive protocol. We will keep you updated on any changes in our operations status immediately. We recognize that this situation is extremely fluid.


In abundance of caution, the museum leadership works to protect its employees and visitors during this unprecedented health crisis, particularly as Tennessee has recently become a pandemic hotspot according to news reports. We’re closely following the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines and updates from local and state governmental health authorities. We continue to put things in place to create a safe museum experience with all the critical guidelines in mind. We’re committed to maintaining a safe environment for our employees and guests. 

In-Person Programming is cancelled until Further notice.

During this period of uncertainty, we have cancelled the Museum’s public, in-person programming until further notice. This includes museum facility rental.  However, we work to present virtual events and programs whenever possible to continue sharing the history and discussion of important issues.

For more information from health officials regarding the Coronavirus (COVID-19), visit the CDC website. 


Museum Holidays

Due to COVID-19, we may make adjustments to the holiday calendar as needed. Traditionally, the museum and administrative offices are closed on the following holidays:

  • New Year's Day
  • Easter Sunday
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Christmas Eve
  • Christmas Day

Out of abundance of caution during the pandemic in 2021, the museum is CLOSED on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

The museum is open on the following holidays, however administrative offices are closed:

  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day

Find Us

Get directions


The National Civil Rights Museum is located at 450 Mulberry Street, Memphis, TN 38103. We are in the heart of the South Main District in downtown Memphis.

Free parking is available for museum guests. To enter the visitor lot, turn north on Mulberry Street from G.E. Patterson Avenue.

View Common Routes

From Interstate I-40 East (Nashville):

  • Take I-40 to I-240 North to Little Rock, Exit 10B.
  • Follow I-240 until it divides, staying in left lanes, take I-40 West to Little Rock
  • Go west to Second St. Downtown, Exit 1A (Second St. Exit veers left going south through Downtown)
  • Take Second St. to G.E. Patterson Blvd.
  • Make a right on G.E. Patterson Blvd.
  • Make a right on Mulberry St.

From Interstate I-40 West (Little Rock):

  • Take I-40 to the Riverside Dr., Downtown, Exit 1.
  • Take Riverside to Beale St., make a left
  • Make next right onto Front St.
  • Take Front to G.E. Patterson Blvd.
  • Make a left on G.E. Patterson Blvd.
  • Make a left on Mulberry St.

From Mississippi, Whitehaven (via I-55 Interstate):

  • Follow I-55 toward St. Louis
  • Keep straight until I-55 turns into Riverside Dr.
  • Make first right at W. Carolina Ave. (gas station at the corner)
  • Take Carolina to South Main, turn left on South Main
  • Take South Main to G.E. Patterson Blvd.
  • Make a right on G.E. Patterson Blvd.
  • Take G.E. Patterson to Mulberry St.
  • Make a left on Mulberry St.

Campus Map

Camera/video & Media Policy

Photography within the museum exhibitions is permitted as long as NO FLASH is used. Guests are invited to post images of museum experiences to our social media pages.

Media personnel, photojournalists and bloggers must be credentialed at least 48 hours in advance.  Send requests to the communications office at (901) 521-9699 ext. 2292 or

Security Screenings

All guests entering the National Civil Rights Museum are subject to a screening process.  The National Civil Rights Museum reserves the right to inspect all guest’s packages, purses, backpacks, fanny packs and other bags prior to entering the museum. Sharp objects more than 2.5 inches long, weapons and illegal contraband will not be permitted in the museum. Please leave and secure any unnecessary articles in your vehicle to expedite your entry.  Oversize bags brought into the museum must be checked with security.  Animals are not allowed in the museum, except for service animals.

Family Guide

The National Civil Rights Museum seeks to open a dialogue about the story of African Americans who experienced and resisted discrimination — a history that spans slavery through the modern Civil Rights Movement, nonviolent protests to armed self-defense. To reveal the full story, the museum contains sensitive materials that may be frightening or troubling to children and adolescents. Review our family guide for suggestions on ways to discuss sensitive topics with young visitors.

Group Reservations

Groups of 20 or more are eligible for a discounted admissions rate.

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Facility Rental

The museum is an exceptional location for your convention, meeting, or corporate holiday party.

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Visitor FAQs

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