The former queen of Graceland made her way to Memphis for the big opening ceremony for Elvis Presley’s Memphis, Thursday. She says a lot of the items showcased in the new exhibits, once filled a warehouse. The new space is now fit for a king and his fans that flock to Graceland from around the globe to catch a glimpse.
“They’re going to come and really get a full blown take a look at Elvis’ journey,” said Presley.
That journey began in Tupelo, Mississippi with parents who didn’t have a whole lot more than love to offer.
“They were dirt poor.” Presley says it’s a start that shaped her ex-husband. “When I say humble, you go to Tupelo and you see the shotgun house. People think of a two bedroom house, it’s a two room house and they had no plumbing and they had no electricity.”
Elvis was always bigger than that tiny box, though and you certainly couldn’t put him in one. Priscilla Presley says his uniqueness had him destined for the stage. “He wasn’t just a normal guy that came off the street. He, Elvis, was born to be who he was.” That doesn’t mean he didn’t still enjoy the simple things in life, once he hit stardom. Presley says he loved to order in Krystal’s burgers. “The hamburgers were so small! He didn’t like big things to eat.”
Outside of the King’s palace, the pair loved the entertainment that Memphis had to offer, including Malco Theater and the Orpheum. Decades later, Priscilla says coming back to the area is still a very comfortable fit. Especially Graceland itself. “The home impinged very much on my life and when I go there, even today, it’s like I never left. I’m in a time warp.”
It’s his legacy that she’s loved to share too, with adoring fans and future generations, including her own grandchildren. “They listen to singing, they listen to Sirius radio. They know who their grandfather is,” she says.