The Auction at Graceland•Elvis Week•August 12, 2018
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 8/12/2018

Television was an important aspect of Elvis’ life— from the pivotal moment in his career on The Ed Sullivan Show to maintaining a television set in almost every room in every house he owned. Graceland alone had 14 televisions, and Elvis would often turn on a TV as soon as he walked into a room because he enjoyed having the background noise. The offered Zenith Solid State Chromacolor II model was designed to be portable as opposed to earlier models that were housed in wooden cabinets and displayed as pieces of furniture in their own right. The size was perfect for Lisa Marie’s bedroom in the 1970s where this set was located at Graceland. This circa 1973 model bears a paper sticker on the back that reads “3582704 / F4030X/ Cab. Back.” Zenith, originally based in Illinois, released its first commercial television to be sold to the public in 1948 and over the years made many strides in the technology, including being the first to invent the modern remote control. However, it was control and patience that Elvis at times lost when watching TV, as evidenced by the television sets that became victims to his sharpshooting over the years. Elvis was known to occasionally shoot a hotel TV or one of his own with a firearm when frustrated, and this example was not spared that fate. A letter from Letetia “Tish” Henley, Elvis’ personal nurse in the ’70s, recounts the specific circumstances under which this set fell prey to Elvis’ bullet. It reads in part: 

One night I was upstairs at Graceland with Elvis. We were talking and watching television in Lisa’s bedroom. Lisa was not in Memphis at the time. The picture on Lisa’s TV would not keep from “rolling.” Elvis reached over to the TV tray that was next to the chair in which he was sitting, picked up a hand gun and shot at the TV. The television immediately lost power. Elvis told me to call my husband Tommy, get him to come get the TV and take it to what Elvis referred to as the “TV Graveyard!” Before trashing the TV, Tommy plugged it in and to his amazement, the TV was still working. I told Elvis about this several days later. He first didn’t want to believe that he hadn’t “killed” the TV. He then asked me if our girls had TVs in their rooms which they did not. Elvis said for me to put the TV in one of their bedrooms in our trailer.

Even Elvis couldn’t put this television out of commission, proving that Zenith lived up to its famous slogan “The quality goes in before the name goes on.” The television measures 26 by 18 by 21 inches (66.04 x 45.72 x 53.34 cm) and is accompanied by a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.

The TV presents in working order; it was tested and was turned on. The damage from the pistol shot left a hole in the frame around the screen and the base below it. Excellent condition.
Elvis Presley Owned Television Set from Lisa Marie’s Bedroom at Graceland - With Bullet Hole from When Elvis Shot It
Current Bidding (Reserve Has Been Met)
Minimum Bid: $2,500.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $4,000.00
Estimate: $5,000 - $10,000
Number Bids: 8
Auction closed on Sunday, August 12, 2018.
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