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One Mom's Perfect Imperfection: Around the Town Tuesday - Historical Sites

One Mom's Perfect Imperfection

One mom's journey through life and her hodgepodge of hobbies.

18 May 2010

Around the Town Tuesday - Historical Sites

It's Tuesday and time for another Around the Town Tuesday. This week we're exploring your historical sites. Grab your button from the link in the menubar and don't forget to link up.  

So I cheated a little this week.  My little town of Arlington is just outside of the big city of Memphis.  We had just done a Flat Stanley project for my nephew in Wisconsin and had toured Memphis a little already.  Those are some pretty interesting and better known historical sites so I decided to just roll with it for this post.  

First up, Graceland.  You can't come to Memphis without going to Graceland.  Well, maybe you can but it would be a sin, in my opinion.  While doing the Flat Stanley project, I learned that Graceland has the most visitors per year for a private house in the United States, second only to the White House.  This 13.8 acre Estate was the home of the one and only Elvis Presley.  SWOON!  It opened to the public in 1982 and was listed in the National Register of Historic Places on November 7, 1991.  It was then declared a National Historic Landmark on March 27, 2006.  Elvis, along with his parents and his grandmother are buried on the estate in the Meditation Gardens.  

You can just see the house behind the trees in the background.  We couldn't get any closer without security jumping us or paying the admission fees.  We'll save that post for a later date.  

On the famous Union Avenue is the equally famous Sun Studio which houses Sun Records.  Opened by Sam Phillips in 1950, Sun Records gave many famous musicians their start - Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, just to name a few.  So you can understand why it quickly came to be known as the birthplace of Rock N Roll.  If you love music, being here is surreal.  Many a famous songs and their creators have come to Memphis just to record here.  Sun Studio was listed in the National Register of Historic Places on July 31, 2003 as well as listed as a National Historic Landmark that same day.

Heard of Beale Street?  It is significant to the City of Memphis' history as well as to blues music.  The street runs through downtown Memphis from the Mississippi River to East Street.  Originally called Beale Avenue for a forgotten military hero, it originally housed shops for trade merchants trading goods with ships along the Mississippi River.  Eventually, it became a street where traveling musicians would perform, eventually becoming known as home of the blues.  Today, there are many clubs and restaurants  along Beale Street which has become a major tourist attraction for the City of Memphis.  It became a National Historic Landmark on May 23, 1966 and was listed in the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966.  It truly is an experience if you ever have the chance to walk along Beale Street.

The Lorraine Motel is where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was shot and killed by James Earl Ray on April 4, 1968.  It is now the location of the National Civil Rights Museum.  The Museum opened on September 28, 1991 and details the struggle of African Americans civil rights from the arrival of the first Africans in the British colonies in 1619 to the assassination of King in 1968.

King was standing on that very balcony where you see the wreath at the time shots were fired by Ray ending the civil rights activist's life.  The room just to the right of the wreath was his motel room.  

Last but not least is the mighty Mississippi River.  The largest river system in North America, it runs from Minnesota through Louisiana where it begins to flow into the Gulf of Mexico.  Memphis has the second-busiest cargo port on the Mississippi River, which is also the fourth-busiest inland port in the United States.  Just across the river is Arkansas.  

I hope you enjoyed getting a taste of Memphis, TN and it's history.  I certainly enjoyed sharing it with you all as well as with Flat Stanley who is back home in Wisconsin safe and sound.  

Jes and I will be updating the blog hop schedule this week with 3 more exciting subjects for you to blog about.  I'll be sure to post about it and link to it in the menubar for reference.  

Don't forget to grab your button and link up!  MckLinky shuts down midnight tomorrow.

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  • At May 18, 2010 at 8:01 AM , Anonymous Liz said...

    I think it's safe to say Keegan loved holding Flat Stanley for all these!

  • At May 18, 2010 at 8:04 AM , Anonymous wrsallee said...

    I didn't know what Flat Stanley was called, but I saw one a few years ago when we were visiting an aquarium. A little girl had one and we asked her what it was. I had forgotten about it and my oldest son was too young at the time to do something like that. Very interesting! Thanks for the website link.

  • At May 18, 2010 at 8:30 AM , Anonymous CourtneyN said...

    Keegan LOVED doing this project for his cousin. LOVED it! I was worried because it was particularly windy that day and I just knew he'd let and Flat Stanley would get whisked away to who knows where?!

  • At May 18, 2010 at 8:32 AM , Anonymous CourtneyN said...

    You're welcome! We actually met another family with a Flat Stanley from PA at the gates of Graceland while we were there with ours. It's a popular project!

  • At May 18, 2010 at 12:48 PM , Anonymous 4sweetangels said...

    Thanks for sharing. This is neat! I am of a town of 1000 people. Not much history here. Maybe I should take a peek. Who knows! THere might be more than what I think!



  • At May 18, 2010 at 2:02 PM , Anonymous Natalie said...

    what a great post! thanks for sharing!

  • At May 18, 2010 at 6:28 PM , Anonymous CourtneyN said...

    Thanks for stopping by, Natalie!

  • At May 18, 2010 at 6:28 PM , Anonymous CourtneyN said...

    You just never know! ;)

  • At May 18, 2010 at 7:32 PM , Anonymous Jes said...

    How freaking cute! Keegan is so excited to show off all the sites of Memphis!

  • At May 18, 2010 at 8:32 PM , Anonymous CourtneyN said...

    He was! He was totally in to Flat Stanley!

  • At May 18, 2010 at 9:07 PM , Anonymous carissa said...

    i'd love to visit there sometime! it sound fantastic and i enjoyed the pictures. your little guy is just PRESH!


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