It is one of the most iconic images from the Civil Rights movement - the friends of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. pointing to the boarding house across the street, as the surround the body of the civil rights leader, shot just moments before the photo was taken.
Friends of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. point to the boarding house across the street. — Photo courtesy of AP File/ Time, Inc. 1968
The Lorraine Motel is now the National Civil Rights Museum, but never has the general public been allowed on the balcony outside room 306 - until now. From November 2012 through 2013, the museum's iconic Lorraine Motel building will be closed, as upgrades to and expansion of the exhibit areas are undertaken. During the renovations, the public will be given access to the balcony - sure to be a major draw to the museum despite the fact the rest of the Lorraine building will be closed. When renovations are complete in 2013, the balcony will again close to the public.
This is the first major renovation of the Lorraine Motel exhibition space since it opened in 1991. The enhancements will include upgraded visitor amenities and signage with listening posts, additional artifacts, interactive exhibits and a reconfigured auditorium and theater.
The Legacy Building - the boarding house across the street from the Lorraine Motel (and from where the fatal shot was fired) - will remain open during the renovations.