Memphis was established in 1819 on land that had previously been home to Chickasaw Indians. One of its founders was Andrew Jackson, later president of the United States. Memphis was named after the ancient Egyptian city of Memphis (which means “Good Abode” in English). The city got insolvent, lost inhabitants, and relinquished its charter in 1879.
The initial settlers in Memphis were a hunter-gatherer culture. For roughly 10,000 years, they lived in the area around the river. After Spanish and French explorers scouted the area, European residents didn’t arrive until the early 16th century.
The city was established in 1819 and quickly became a transportation hub for the vast amounts of cotton produced locally. In the Battle of Memphis in 1862, Union forces defeated Confederate forces and took control of the city for the duration of the Civil War.
A CITY IS ESTABLISHED.
Memphis was not formally created until Tennessee was incorporated to the United States. Its founders decided to name the city after an ancient Egyptian city that also enjoyed a riverside setting.
Due to its strong connections offered by its location on the Mississippi River, as well as its rail linkages and robust slave market, the city grew into a hub throughout the 19th century. During the Civil War, Union forces captured Confederate Memphis, which developed as a supply hub. This affluence came to an end in the closing decades of the century, when yellow fever swept over the region, wiping out about three-quarters of the population.
MEMPHIS IN THE TWENTIETH CENTURY
Memphis prospered around the turn of the twentieth century thanks to its thriving cotton, hardwood, and mule industries – this was a watershed moment in Memphis’ history. Clarence Saunders, a businessman, founded the city’s first supermarket chain and amassed significant personal wealth as a result. Unfortunately, due to stock manipulations, he lost his fortune and had to sell his newly constructed estate. Saunders’ estate, known as the Pink Palace, was eventually refurbished and turned into the city’s famed natural history and science museum.
EMERGENCE AS A MUSIC HUB
Memphis became a centre for African-American music, including blues, jazz, rhythm and soul, at the turn of the twentieth century. The Memphis Recording Service started in the middle of the twentieth century, and musicians such as Roy Orbison, Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, and BB King all recorded there. Sun Studio, where Elvis Presley and a slew of other great singers recorded, now has a museum dedicated to its illustrious past. It also serves as a fully functional recording studio.
Martin Luther King’s assassination The civil rights movement reached its pinnacle in the 1960s, culminating in a watershed moment in Memphis history. A well-known workers’ strike was held in support of equality and against poverty.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was drawn to the city as a result of this action, which also brought national attention to the plight of minorities and the impoverished. King’s sad assassination on his motel balcony made international headlines. The Lorraine Motel, as it was known at the time, is now the National Civil Rights Museum.
THE KING’S DEATH
Elvis Presley died in 1977 at Graceland, his renowned 23-room residence. The property is the third most visited residence in the United States, drawing throngs of Elvis enthusiasts eager to view the King’s home. Visitors may also see the star’s private jets as well as his impressive collection of cars and motorcycles.
This massive white mansion serves as a museum and has been listed as a National Historic Landmark. Elvis Presley is still remembered as one of Memphis’ most well-known people.
Hunter-gatherers were among the first immigrants in Memphis. For over 10,000 years, they lived in the area around the river. After Spanish and French explorers had investigated the area, European residents did not arrive until the beginning of the 16th century.
The city was founded in 1819 and immediately became a major transportation centre for the huge quantities of cotton produced in the area. Union forces defeated Confederate forces at the Battle of Memphis in 1862, taking control of the city for the duration of the Civil War.