These days, everyone knows the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll lived in his own castle: Graceland.
But when you’re somewhere between up-and-coming star and legendary rock star, where do you call home?
The answer: 1034 Audubon Drive, Memphis, Tennessee.
Elvis and his parents, Gladys and Vernon, moved to Memphis when Elvis was 13, and for the next eight years, the family lived in several apartments and homes. But in early 1956, Elvis found success with a little tune you may have heard – “Heartbreak Hotel” – and he used the profits from that to purchase a home for his family in Memphis. This home was the first owned by the Presleys in Memphis.
Elvis purchased the home from the Welsh Plywood Corporation for $29,500, on March 12, 1956. He paid a $500 down payment on March 3.
The Audubon Drive home, built in 1954, has four bedrooms and two and a half baths. It didn’t have a fence at first, but as Elvis’ popularity grew, he added one. The fence even included some music notes, though those have since been removed. Elvis also had a pool installed.
Elvis’ neighbors on Audubon Drive truly had a rock star as a neighbor. He’d already made his first national television appearances. His first album arrived in stores about a week and a half after he purchased the house. He performed hundreds of concerts across the country. Audubon Drive was his home while he made his first movie, “Love Me Tender.” After he jammed out with his fellow Memphis musicians in the Million Dollar Quartet, he went home to – you guessed it – Audubon Drive.
Elvis and his parents lived on Audubon Drive for about a year before they purchased Graceland, which he called home for the rest of his life.
Today, 1034 Audubon Drive is privately owned.
If you love learning about Elvis, his life and his music, come to Memphis and visit Graceland.
Watch our first “Hidden Graceland” episode of our web series, Gates of Graceland to see a special mirror that Elvis brought with him from Audubon to Graceland.