Located at 333 Beale Street, in Ernest Withers’ last working studio and the building that was named in his honor in 1995, the Withers Collection Museum and Gallery is 7,000 square feet of Memphis History. In February 2011, The Withers Collection opened its doors to the public, inviting everyone to see what Ernest Withers had accomplished. With close to 1.8 million images in the archive, you can imagine what a labor of love it was to sort, preserve, and print the images they chose to put on display, a labor of love that isn’t even close to completion. The images on display range from key Civil Rights Movement events to legendary blues and jazz performers. Martin Luther King, Jr., B.B. King, “The King of Rock and Roll,” and “The Queen of Soul,” can all be seen, captured in their elements, in beautiful black and white photographs. If you love music, history, and Memphis, a visit to The Withers Collection is a must!
- The Withers Collection is the largest family-owned photographic collection taken by one individual
- The Withers Collection Archive contains approximately 1.8 million images
- The location of the Gallery is the same building and rooms that housed the last working studio of Dr. Ernest C. Withers
- In 1995, the City of Memphis named the location at 333 Beale Street the Ernest C. Withers Building
- The current location is over 7,000 square feet, and includes a Main Gallery, a Music Gallery, and a special events space in our Studio Lounge
- We are the only authorized source for licensing Ernest C. Withers photographs
Plan Your Visit
- Give yourself and your group enough time to see everything. Most visitors to the museum are able to see the entire gallery in about an hour.
- The museum is self guided but don't be shy! We welcome your questions and comments. If there's something you'd like to know more about, a museum associate will be happy to assist you and answer questions.
- No photos please. We welcome you to take photos of yourself or of your group, we even have a "photo booth" with a prop table in our Music Room, however, we ask that you do not take photos of any Ernest Withers images.
- We welcome individuals and groups! If you are interested in booking a group tour or scheduling a field trip, contact Rachel Clark or click here.