CIVIL RIGHTS LAND­MARK

Albuquerque Journal - Parade - - Trnaetionaalsure - —Becky Hughes

Nearly 50 years ago, on April 4, 1968, Martin Luther King Jr. was as­sas­si­nated on the bal­cony of the Lor­raine Mo­tel in Mem­phis dur­ing a visit to sup­port san­i­ta­tion work­ers on strike.

To­day, the for­mer mo­tel is home to the Na­tional Civil Rights Mu­seum. Much of the build­ing has been ren­o­vated, but room 306—where King spent his last hours—re­mains as it was on the day he died, down to the un­made bed where he took an af­ter­noon nap.

The mu­seum cov­ers 400 years of his­tory, with 260 ar­ti­facts and more than 40 films. Vis­i­tors can view King’s pre­served room and sit by a statue of Rosa Parks on a replica of the bus where she re­fused to give her seat to a white pas­sen­ger.

The mu­seum’s MLK50 com­mem­o­ra­tion will cul­mi­nate in a day of re­mem­brance on April 4, with a cho­rus of bells tolling na­tion­wide at 6:01 p.m. CT, the ex­act time King was shot.

Mu­seum pres­i­dent Terri Free­man hopes that vis­i­tors will carry on King’s work to­day: “Peo­ple leave here un­der­stand­ing that they are or­di­nary peo­ple who can do ex­tra­or­di­nary things.”

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