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A Whole Lotta Loretta

The original Coal Miner’s Daughter shares a lifetime of memories.

Loretta Lynn is beaming as she cuts the ceremonial ribbon at the opening of the Coal Miner's Daughter Museum on her ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tenn. Standing beside her are sister Crystal Gayle, fellow legend George Jones, Tanya Tucker, Naomi Judd and others.

Loretta has acquired a lot of memories, a lot of honors and a lot of keepsakes since she began her musical journey in Butcher Hollow, Ky. - and now she's sharing them with the public.

Loretta, who calls herself a "pack rat," personally selected the museum's collection from items she had packed away "upstairs, downstairs, in closets, everywhere," she says. Her late husband, Mooney, who died in 1996, is a strong presence throughout the museum, but nowhere more than in The Mooney Lynn Pavilion and a re-creation of his office.

The museum also features displays depicting Loretta's school, her first Nashville home and decades worth of awards and elegant stage outfits. One display - her first set of bedroom furniture - holds special memories.

"Me and Doo slept in that bed for 20 years," she says. "We paid $200 for the suit. It took us forever to pay it off, $10 a month. We had it hard. I thought I'd never make it."