Plan A Visit

The Bessie Smith Cultural Center is open Monday through Friday between 10 am and 5 pm.

Saturdays from February 1 – September 30 12 pm – 4 pm

Saturdays from October 1 – January 31 By appointment only

In the case of inclement weather, we operate on the Hamilton County School schedule.


Admission Prices:

Adults $7.00
Senior Citizens & Students $5.00
Children (6-12 years old) $3.00
Members & Children (5 and under) Free
Group rates (for 10 or more) available with prior registration.


Group and schools tours of the Bessie Smith Cultural Center are available. We invite you to call to schedule your tour so we may accommodate your group’s needs. Access the group tour form by clicking here.


The Bessie Smith Cultural Center is fully accessible. If you have special needs, call (423) 266-8658 prior to your visit.

View our building diagram for entrance locations.

Directions & Parking

Located at 200 Martin Luther King Boulevard in Chattanooga, the Bessie Smith Cultural Center is easily accessible from I-24. Free and accessible parking is available in our parking lot located on the corner of Lindsay and Martin Luther King Boulevard.

Photography Policy

The Bessie Smith Cultural Center and Chattanooga African American Museum would like to make your visit as pleasant as possible. While personal use photography is encouraged at the Museum, it must be conducted without disruption to Museum operations or visitors and with the safety of the art collection in mind. Personal Use Photography Photography for personal use is permitted except in special exhibitions and where specifically prohibited. This includes cell phones, handheld cameras and video cameras that are set to take non-flash photos. Flash photography is strictly prohibited. Monopods, tripods, and selfie sticks are not permitted. Rights and Reproductions Photographs are permitted for personal, non-commercial use only. Photographs may not be published, sold, or otherwise distributed for commercial purposes. Visitors may post images from their visit on personal social media sites, so long as they are not used for profit. However, we ask that you do not post photographs of the Museum’s entire permanent collection online. While at the Museum, visitors may be photographed or videotaped by Museum photographers for educational and promotional purposes. These images may be used to publicize the Museum in print, online, and display materials, and may also be distributed to the media. Attendance on Museum property is implied consent for the use of visitors’ likeness for marketing purposes. Art objects appearing in images may be protected by copyright, publication rights, or related interests. In photographing an art object, it is the visitor’s responsibility to obtain copyright or other permissions may be required from an artist, agent, estate or other third-party rights holder. Photography of works on loan is not permitted. BSCC reserves the right to withhold or withdraw permission to photograph on the premises. BSCC staff has the authority to approach and verify the intent of photography and to enforce the BSCC Photography Policy. Photography of the exterior of the Museum is always permitted.


Become a member now and enjoy 10% discount at the Bessie Smith Cultural Center’s Gift Shop!