The Delta Blues Museum is dedicated to creating a welcoming
place where visitors find meaning, value, and perspective by
exploring the history and heritage of the unique American musical
art form of the blues.
The City of Clarksdale, located at the intersection of Highways
61 and 49 (“the crossroads”), and the surrounding
Delta region are known as ”the land where the blues began”.
Since its creation, the Delta Blues Museum has preserved, interpreted,
and encouraged a deep interest in the story of the blues. Established
in 1979 by the Carnegie Public Library Board of Trustees and
re-organized as a stand-alone museum in 1999, the Delta Blues
Museum is the state’s oldest music museum. A five-member
board appointed by the Mayor and Board of Commissioners of Clarksdale
governs the museum. Funded by the City of Clarksdale, admissions,
memberships, gift shop revenue, granting agencies and donations,
the museum uses public and private funds to carry out its mission.
Since 1999, the Delta Blues Museum has been housed in the historic
Clarksdale freight depot, built in 1918 for the Yazoo and Mississippi
Valley Railroad. The building was designated a Mississippi Landmark
Property in 1996. The former freight area- about five thousand
square feet of ground floor space – is devoted to permanent
and traveling exhibits.
The Delta Blues Museum Stage is adjacent to the museum classroom,
which hosts a year-round music education program as well as
lectures and symposia. The Delta Blues Museum Stage serves as
the main venue for local festivals such as the Sunflower River
Blues and Gospel Festival in August and the Juke Joint Festival
Shelley Ritter, Director
Maie Smith, Group Tour Manager
Christopher Coleman, Gift Shop Manager