The Auction at Graceland•January 7, 2017
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 1/7/2017
Perhaps what so endears Elvis Presley to his fans was his never-ending spirit of giving. In December of 1960, an editorial ran in an L.A. paper about the stalled efforts to complete the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial. This article was spotted by the Colonel and Elvis answered the call to duty. On January 11, 1961, a press conference was held and it was announced that Elvis would perform a benefit concert on the condition that every penny from the concert go to the fund. Elvis had just turned 26 and the fact that the average age of the 1,177 American seamen that died aboard the U.S.S. Arizona during the Pearl Harbor attack was about that same age was not lost on him. It was stated during the press conference that not only was everyone expected to pay for entry to the event but that Elvis wanted to be the one to buy the first ticket. The concert was March 25th, 1961, and 4,000 screaming fans, 15 songs and $54,000 later, Elvis left the building. As a result of the concert and the huge amount of media attention it garnered, public and private donations flooded in from all over the country and on May 30, 1962 (Memorial Day), the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial was dedicated. This original white press ribbon from the event states in gold lettering “Press / Presley / U.S.S. Arizona Benefit” and was made by Geo. Lauterer Corp in Chicago, Illinois. The ribbon measures 4 1/4 by 2 inches (10.79 x 5.08 cm) and is accompanied by a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.
The ribbon is in excellent condition with a horizontal crease down the center.