In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum and the Mississippi History Museum are offering free admission Monday.
Free admissions are supported by FedEx Corporation.
“We are grateful to FedEx Corporation for their continued support of our annual Martin Luther King Jr. celebration,” said Katie Blount, director of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, in a statement. “Their generosity allows us to invite the public to safely celebrate Dr. King’s life at the museums and through virtual programming.”
The museums will open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Safety precautions at museums include requiring all visitors to wear masks and observe social distancing guidelines.
At 6 p.m. Monday, the annual MLK Night of Culture program will livestream on the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum Facebook page. Writer and poet C. Leigh McInnis will headline the event, which includes live painting, music and spoken word performances by local artists. This year’s theme is “I Am a Man,” a declaration of the 1968 Memphis sanitation strikers. King joined activists Rev. James Lawson, T.O. Jones, and others in support of the sanitation strike.
A new special exhibition, I AM A MAN: Civil Rights Photographs in the American South, 1960–1970, will open at the museums Saturday, Jan. 30. It will feature a wide range of photographs capturing key events of the Civil Rights Movement across the South, including James Meredith’s integration of the University of Mississippi, the sanitation workers’ strike in Memphis, Martin Luther King’s funeral, and the Poor People’s Campaign.
At 6 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 19, the New Stage Theatre production “The Debate for Democracy,” a conversation between Martin Luther King Jr. organizer Ella Baker, and activist Fannie Lou Hamer, will livestream on the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum Facebook page.
Dr. King’s involvement in Mississippi includes attending the funeral of NAACP state field secretary Medgar Evers in 1963, visiting Greenwood in support of Mississippi Freedom Summer in 1964, and testifying in support of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP) during the 1964 Democratic National Convention.