NEW YORK -

President Barack Obama will help open the National Sept. 11 Memorial Museum Thursday morning in at Ground Zero in New York.

He'll dedicate the museum along with Sept. 11 survivors, rescuers and victims' families.

The museum extends 70 feet underground to the twin towers' foundations, and it honors the nearly 3,000 people killed in New York, Washington and the Pennsylvania countryside by terrorists on Sept. 11, 2001.

The museum will be open for private tours offered to survivors, rescuers and victims' families of Sept. 11. The museum will open to the public May 21.

President Obama and the first lady will tour the museum at 9:40 a.m. and then the president will speak at a ceremony at 10 a.m.

We will stream the ceremony live on News4Jax and on Channel 4.

The memorial museum leads people on an unsettling journey through the terrorist attacks, with forays into their lead up and legacy.

Learn about the museum's design

There are scenes of horror, including videos of the skyscrapers collapsing and people falling from them. But there also are symbols of heroism, ranging from damaged fire trucks to the wristwatch of one of the airline passengers who confronted the hijackers.

"You won't walk out of this museum without a feeling that you understand humanity in a deeper way," museum President Joe Daniels said Wednesday.

The museum and memorial plaza above, which opened in 2011, were built for $700 million in donations and tax dollars. Work on the museum was marked by construction problems, financial tie-ups and disputes over its content and the appropriate way to honor the dead, but its leaders see it as a monument to unity and resilience.

Sept. 11 Museum: Tragedy turns objects into icons

Obama is mindful of "the need to remember and the power of memory in a nation's history, as well as the need to properly grieve and rebuild," White House spokesman Jay Carney said Wednesday.

Former President George W. Bush issued a statement saying the museum "will help ensure that our nation remembers the lessons of Sept. 11.".