Ferriday, Louisiana: Jerry Lee Lewis Museum and Liquor StoreRun by Jerry's sister, who lives there. The liqour store is a drive-thru.
Visitor Tips and News About Jerry Lee Lewis Museum and Liquor Store
I went here back in the mid 1990s, on a trip from Lack Charles, Louisiana (where I was in school), up to the Smokey Mountains. I wanted to detour through Ferriday, boyhood home of Jerry Lee Lewis, one of my music idols.
After asking around (it was a thrill meeting the older people who actually knew him from his childhood), I was directed to a drive-through liquor store on the west side of town. The man who ran the drive-through was very polite and inviting. "Oh, you'll want to see my wife, Frankie Jean, next door; just knock and tell her I sent you; she won't mind."
Next door was a small, unassuming, one-story house made of brick and clapboard siding. I walked over, lightly knocked, and was greeted by a very sweet Frankie Jean, Jerry Lee's sister. After a quick "Who the hell are you, you young punk" look-over, Frankie Jean was more than happy to give me a tour of their childhood home. She showed me pictures. She let me play an old stand-up piano. We sat and talked. She was very nice and I never will forget the day that Frankie Jean showed me an inner, intimate window into one of my rock and roll idols. A day well spent! One of the seminal events of my younger life. Thank you Frankie Jean for your kindness to a stranger.[J T Masters, 12/28/2012]
In 2005, having arrived in New Orleans, I became obsessed with the impulsive idea of taking a day trip up to Ferriday to see if I could find the boyhood home of rock legend Jerry Lee Lewis. I convinced my wife to undertake the adventure, and we arrived mid-afternoon in the sleepy Southern town of Ferriday. We searched in vain and were just about to give up when I asked an ancient-looking black man walking along the road if he knew where Jerry Lee Lewis's house was to be found. Giving all appearances of having lived in Ferriday his entire life, he seemed bemused at my utter disorientation and immediately was able to send me to the exact location.
Arriving at the house, we initially drove through a bizarre drive-through liquor store where a young woman (whom I believe was a niece of Jerry Lee's) directed us to the front door of the house/museum. We were greeted by a friendly older woman who, to my delight, identified herself as Jerry Lee's sister Frankie Jean. Frankie Jean left us alone for about 15 minutes in a sort of tribute room filled with Jerry Lee Lewis paraphernalia, while a video showing a biopic of Jerry Lee's life and career played. Frankie Jean then showed us through the house. My wife and I were the only ones there and we got to know Frankie-Jean quite well, with our visit lasting for about an hour. We eventually ended up in Frankie-Jean's kitchen sitting around the table sipping lemonade.
As we departed the house, we purchased a couple of items from Frankie-Jean's museum, but then she gave me several other items as a gift that had been signed by Jerry-Lee. Visiting JLL's boyhood home and getting a very special and personal tour from his sister was a pleasure and, for me, was the highlight of my trip to Louisiana.[Anthony, 06/05/2010]
Bizarre, the place is a dump inside the twilight zone. Frankie Jean was not there; the niece gave the tour. She actually locked us in a room that was dark and dingy and raised the tour rate on the spot. Gave no info about Jerry Lee, and the drive up liquor store was closed up. I recommend that you run, don't walk away from this tour site. No wonder that Jerry Lee wasn't around either.[Joan, 07/06/2008]
And yet... there's something strangely appealing about what you describe....
This is the home of Frankie Jean, sister of rocker/country singer Jerry Lee Lewis. The house has become a Jerry Lee shrine, with family photos, bills, family mementoes, clothes, guns etc. covering every space in the still inhabited house. It is the most amazing experience.
The day I visited I was shown around in semi-darkness (he couldn't find the light-switches) by one of Jerry Lee's cousins(clutching a can of Bud)and giving the lowdown on the colorful family history. I understand that Frankie usually does the tour herself. Even stranger is the fact that the house incorporates a drive-through liquor store at the side (no walkups!) which is worth a visit by itself. The whole thing is bizarre but wonderful. Donation expected.[jack, 10/04/2000]