The Auction at Graceland•January 6, 2018
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 1/6/2018

From the collection of “Rockin’” Robin Rosaaen.

Just as his star was on the steady rise, Elvis answered the call of duty to serve his country in the Army, leaving his adoring fans in March 1958 as he set sail for Germany. Ever the promoter, Colonel Parker was concerned that Elvis’ fame might dwindle in his absence, so he worked vigorously to keep Elvis in the forefront of every young fan’s mind, as evidenced by this collection of correspondence.

On November 18, 1958, the Colonel sends word to Vernon and Elvis sharing the good news that 20th Century Fox had struck a deal for Elvis to star in films after his service and for upgraded compensation for such. The Colonel also discusses the profit-sharing checks from MGM for Jailhouse Rock and that the RCA Victor gimmicks used to promote created a surge over the previous year. Several months later, on May 19, 1959, the Colonel writes another letter to Vernon and Elvis in which he discusses in detail the altered plans for Anita’s travel and visit to Germany. Elvis was dating Anita Wood at the time and although her surname is not used, it is assumed this is the same Anita that will be visiting and trying to keep “everything from getting out.” The Colonel also mentions The Ed Sullivan Show and other business matters. The very same day, Tom Diskin sends a letter to “Elvis, Vernon and all” in which he provides an update on publicity Elvis is receiving and turning down an interview with Dick Clark. This short letter is signed by Tom Diskin in green ink on Thomas A. Parker covered wagon stationery. 

The three letters are offered with two original mailing envelopes from Thomas A. Parker, P.O. 417, Madison, Tenn. The air mail envelope is addressed to Vernon Presley at the Hilberts Park Hotel in Germany and is marked special delivery but returned for insufficient postage. The second envelope is not postmarked and has “Elvis and Vernon Presley (Personal)Personal)Personal)” typed across the front center — the reverse bears an ad for Loving You and King Creole. Elvis’ promotional machine continued to chug along while Elvis was serving his country overseas. 

The two letters measure 11 by 8 1/2 inches (27.94 x 21.59 cm); the smaller Diskin letter measures 5 1/2 by 8 1/2 inches (13.97 x 21.59 cm); and each envelope measures 4 1/4 by 9 1/2 inches (10.79 x 24.13 cm). This important ephemera collection from a pivotal moment in Elvis’ career was offered as part of lot A139 in the 1999 Graceland Archives auction and is accompanied by a letter from this auction as well as a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.

Some discoloration and wear to the top edge of the 1958 letter; both this and the 1959 letter have two horizontal creases from folding. The half-sheet Diskin letter has a horizontal crease down the center. Both envelopes have been ripped open with significant wear and some paper loss. Overall the ephemera collection is in Excellent condition.
1958 and 1959 Letters from Colonel Parker to Vernon and Elvis Presley While Stationed in Germany*
Current Bidding (Reserve Has Been Met)
Minimum Bid: $250.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $812.50
Estimate: $1,000 - $1,500
Number Bids: 15
Auction closed on Saturday, January 6, 2018.
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