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The Peabody Duck At the Peabody Hotel In Memphis, Tennessee
This is a photograph that I took of one of the world famous "Peabody Ducks" who reside on the rooftop of the Peabody Hotel in the city of Memphis, Tennessee. The Peabody Hotel was first opened in downtown Memphis in 1869 by Robert Campbell Brinkley.
During the 1930's, the hotel's general manager, Frank Schutt, returned after a weekend of duck hunting across the Mississippi River in Arkansas. As a joke, some of his friends, put three ducks in the hotel's fountain as a joke...Schutt was so amused by this that the ducks took up permanent residency.
In 1940, the hotel's bellman, Edward Pembroke, became the caretaker for the ducks and was given the unofficial title of the "Duck Master." Mr. Pembroke trained the ducks to march in a straight line into the hotel lobby where they would spend the rest of the day swimming in the hotel fountain until their grand exit back to the roof at 5:00 PM. The procession of the ducks into the hotel's lobby became known as the "Peabody Duck March."
Everyday at 11:00 AM, the Peabody Duck March convenes to the strain of John Phillip Sousa's "King Cotton March." This daily event has gained national and worldwide fame. The ducks have been featured on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, the Oprah Winfrey Show, and Sesame Street. I was fortunate to arrive at the Peabody just in time to catch the ducks on their famous march.
Room #306 of the Lorraine Hotel in Memphis, Tennessee, Site of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Assassination
This is a photo that I took from the parking lot below the balcony of room #306 of the Lorraine Hotel. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. stayed here during the final day of his life along with Rev. Ralph Abernathy. Dr. King was in Memphis supporting the movement for better treatment of the black sanitation workers of Memphis, Tennessee. On the evening of April 4, 1968, the Rev. Billy Kyles stopped by the room to pick up Dr. King and Rev. Abernathy to take them to his house for supper. According to Rev. Kyles, Dr. King was notoriously slow in getting ready so he sat down to wait for him (the supper was planned for 6 PM so they were running late). At about 6 PM, Dr. King and Rev. Kyles stepped out onto the balcony. Dr. King spoke some words to the Rev. Jesse Jackson and others in the parking lot below and then, in an instant, they heard the sound of a gunshot. Rev. Kyles said that he believes Dr. King was dead before he hit the balcony floor. The hotel has since been converted into the Civil Rights Museum.
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