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Martin Luther King Jr.

America's story hits home in Memphis, where the National Civil Rights Museum bears witness for all

America's story hits home in Memphis, where the National Civil Rights Museum bears witness for all

"This is the story of a people.... It is an American story," read the sign by the entrance to the National Civil Rights Museum. It's a tale "of hopes and dreams, of challenge and change." And the story, the sign concludes, "continues today — with you." So I already had a lump in my throat as I entered this museum of the American civil rights movement on the site of one of its defining events, the assassination of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. on April 4, 1968.

It feels right to tell this story in Memphis, a city that's always been a crossroads: a key port on the Mississippi River and a hub for shipping, music, food, races and the history that...

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