What is: The parking lot and stairs to the balcony entrance of the Paramount Movie Theatre, Clarksdale, Mississippi
What was: This old, covered stairway in a parking lot behind the Paramount Movie Theatre in downtown Clarksdale is the entrance for blacks to the segregated balcony in the movie theatre. White people entered the theatre on the main level and at the front entrance on Yazoo Street, under neon lights.
Opened as the Marion Theatre in 1918, it became the Paramount in 1931 and closed in 1976. Civil right activists picketed the theater in the 1960’s, and it was desegregated in 1965.