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Although Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page and Robert Plant recorded an album entitled "Walking into Clarksdale," you don't have to go to the Crossroads on foot. Clarksdale is located approximately 70 miles south of Memphis, Tennessee (in fact, that's what the postmark said on the many postcards we sent), which is a major hub for Northwest Airlines. Rent a car and drive down, because there's way too much to see and you can't do more than a few places on foot from Ground Zero. Although Greyhound will not drop you at the historic old bus station downtown, there is indeed regular service to Clarksdale which will bring you to "the strip" on State Street. There is also an old railroad station on Blues Alley, but at present there is only freight service through Clarksdale and no passenger rail. That's a shame because it would have been fun to tour the Delta by train, recalling the legendary musicians who hopped aboard boxcars so many years ago!
Updated Jan 24, 2005
We were warned by several people to not venture out of the tourist areas at night. With the low economic opportunities in Clarksdale, there is a problem with crime. As one local told us, "we are a small town with a big police force".
Written Aug 27, 2011
I created a separate page about our drive down to the town of Rosedale, Mississippi immortalized in lyrics by Robert Johnson (and covered powerfully by Led Zeppelin) in "Traveling Riverside Blues," as well as Cream's "Crossroads" in which Eric Clapton sings verses from both "Traveling Riverside Blues" and Robert Johnson's "Cross Road Blues."
We didn't stay long enough to do anything but snap a couple of pictures. Rosedale is about 30 miles south of Clarksdale, easily accessible by State Highway 1.
Updated Jan 20, 2005