Welcome to the land where blues began

Frank "Rat" Ratliff

1943 - 2013

Rest in Peace

Frank Ratliff standing outside the Riverside Hotel.

Photo Credit: Roger Stolle

Frank "Rat" Ratliff, 70, Riverside Hotel

Frank "Rat" Ratliff, owner-proprietor of the historic Riverside Hotel where Bessie Smith died (when the building was a hospital), and where a "Who's Who of blues musicians have stayed and played, including Ike Turner, Robert Nighthawk, Sonny Boy Williamson II, John Lee Hooker, Pop Staples, Sam Cooke, the Original Blind Boys, and many, many others. Blues musicians found lodging-and a home at the Riverside.

Many recent visitors to the Museum have received the full Clarksdale blues experience by lodging at the Riverside, down on Sunflower Avenue, with commentary on all things blues by the welcoming "Rat."

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This newsletter is supported in part by funding from the Mississippi Arts Commission, a state agency, and, in part, from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

This site is made possible through support from the Mississippi Arts Commission, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Rock River Foundation.

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Museum Contact information

1 Blues Alley
Clarksdale, MS 38614
Phone: 662-627-6820
Email: info@deltabluesmuseum.org