Memphis: Main Street (Location Key)


Lucius' description of downtown Memphis in The Reivers is based on his previous visit to the city. It includes "the tall buildings, the stores, the hotels" (94). He mentions three real hotels by name: the Gaston, the Peabody and the Gayoso. On that earlier trip Lucius and his family stayed at the Gayoso, a Memphis landmark since 1843. It finally closed in 1962, the year The Reivers was published. Based on census figures, in 1905 the city's population would have been around 120,000. It was already renowned for its nightlife, which is why Lucius explains "our motor trip to Memphis" by asking, rhetorically, "where else could anyone in north Mississippi want to go?" (57).

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Memphis: Main Street
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Memphis: Main Street

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