Whether a diehard car lover or just a lover of good stories, the Edge Motor Museum should be a part of your next trip to Memphis, TN…
We’ve been to a lot of car museums over the years… From the iconic Henry Ford to the numerous little car museums on Route 66, we’ve seen a lot but none quite like the Edge Motor Museum in Memphis, TN.
Hailed as Memphis’ ONLY museum solely dedicated to the automobile, Edge Motor Museum is much more than just a collection of cars in a garage. It’s more like an interactive art gallery where beautiful sports cars are the art.
Most small and medium sized car museums are basically private collections where the owners open the doors to let you peek at their cars. Nothing wrong with that. We like that, but we love how the Edge Motor Museum takes it to the next level. Their museum actually tells a story- a component that makes it interesting to anyone and everyone- even if you’re not a hardcore “gearhead.”
We saw this first-hand when we took a group of nearly 40 people to the museum in 2019. Of course, some were into cars and immediately took to the museum like the Peabody Ducks to fountain water. Others, however, couldn’t tell you a Buick from a barn door… Thankfully, the staff and their multiple interactive displays brought the cars to life, and even the biggest skeptics in our group fell in love with the museum.
The story the Edge Motor Museum tells is that of America from Post-War to 1974. Each vehicle on display comes with its own story, but they all collectively come together to paint a broader picture of American culture over the decades. Other displays such as one on the evolution of car stereos and the soapbox derby also further the story of an America that was changing rapidly through the 40s, 50s, and 60s.
The Edge Motor Museum summarizes the story perfectly:
“America’s obsession with the automobile can be traced back to the first gasoline-powered horseless carriages of the late nineteenth century. But no vehicle is more memorable or conjures more raw fervor than the American sports car. And no era is filled with more freedom, optimism, and confidence than post-war United States.
But the sports car during this time was more than just a thrill ride or status symbol. The sports car was a reflection of American society. It encapsulated the way we used to think and live. It was a symbol of an era.
Certain cars echo certain moments in time – their styling, speed, and spirit mirroring periods of ease and unease, of peace and upheaval, of sensibility and excess. These cars are vehicles to days gone by, and can remind us of our country’s character at different points in time. It’s no wonder we value them so highly and remember them so fondly.”
The museum’s cars and exhibits are only bolstered by the absolutely stunning building housing it all. Located in Memphis’ former automotive district, the building retains some marks of its past like the industrial crane overhead but has been updated to resemble more of a modern art gallery than a garage. The curved walkway, circular car display area, and well-crafted lighting all come together to make the museum visual perfection.
Perhaps the biggest ace in the hole the museum has is its location. Just a block from Sun Studio, the museum is a perfect compliment to a stop at Sun Studio. There are a handful of “must-sees” in Memphis (Graceland, Sun Studio, Stax, the Civil Rights Museum, etc.) and we’re excited to now add the Edge Motor Museum to that distinguished list.
With tickets reasonably priced at $10 for adults and $5 for children ($30 for families of 4 or more) and a location just a stone’s throw from Sun, there’s really no excuse for not adding the museum to your Memphis itinerary.
The Edge Motor Museum
645 Marshall Ave.