American South #6: Final Day

Oscar Sanford ‘26, shares an “eye-catching and moving” day in Memphis.

On our final day in the American south, after some debate, we decided to begin our day with a walk along the water in downtown Memphis. After rolling down and climbing up several hills along the way, we reached the Lorraine Motel Civil Rights Museum, most known as the site at which Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated.

Upon entering, we were immediately shown to a gallery full of photos taken by a UNC graduate. Both eye-catching and moving, these photos offered us a glimpse into the mind of a college student, surrounded by the problems of a rapidly changing south. The museum featured a comprehensive history of the Black-American experience. The exhibits took us from the very first time a black person set foot on American soil, detailing the effects of the slave trade, then moving into the Civil War and finally, the Civil Rights movement and what we can do to help the fight for equality.

After the museum, we picked up barbecue sandwiches and headed to the airport. We had our final debrief, in which we were reminded of the power of the knowledge we possessed and the constant vigilance we must display to achieve true equality. Finally, we said our goodbyes and departed to our separate gates to head home. I would like to extend a special thanks to Annie and Terry for making sure our trip went smoothly and Mr. Perry and LM for being great guides throughout.