January 16, 2021 Sports, Rock & Roll and Americana Auction
This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 1/16/2021

The offered Holy Bible was owned and used by Elvis Presley in the late 1950s. He was given the bible during the first Christmas Eve party at Graceland in 1957 by superfan Gary Pepper. When Gary's collection was sold in 2009, the story was recounted of how Gary and his family and Elvis became acquainted:

Among the enthralled listeners (to Elvis' "That's All Right" on the radio in 1954) were Gary and Mrs. Pepper, who fast became fans. Gary began clipping all mentions of Elvis from the newspapers and sending the to Gladys Presley. Moved by Gary's story, Gladys invited the Pepper family to a Christmas Eve party at Graceland where only close friends and relatives of the Presley's would be in attendance.

It was at this special occasion at Graceland that the offered bible was given to Elvis by Gary Pepper. Gary was later president of the "Elvis Tankers Fan Club," and he and his family formed a relationship with the entire Presley family. Elvis even employed Gary’s father as a guard at Graceland.

This offered white bible has “Holy Bible” embossed in gold in the center and “Elvis A Presley” embossed in gold in the lower right corner of the cover. Under “presented to” the brightly colored title page lists “Elvis Presley / Gary Pepper / Dec. 25, 1957” in two different blue inks written atop one another, with a red Gary Pepper address stamp below. The bible has many markings in the front and back in various inks and scripts of unknown origin, and passages have been underlined or marked in various places throughout the book, some likely after being gifted by Elvis to his Aunt Nash in 1965. The bible comes with a notarized letter from Nash's daughter Donna Presley that states:

The bible was given to Elvis by Gary Pepper, a long time friend, on December 25, 1957. Elvis used the bible and then gave it to my mom, Elvis’ Aunt Nash, in early 1965 during one of their many bible discussions. Any time that my mom was around Elvis would often take her upstairs to his bedroom, wrap her in a blanket (because he kept it so cold in his room) and they would have in-depth conversations about the bible. During one of these conversations, Elvis gave the bible to my mom. She used it for many years in church and whenever she visited nursing homes. My mom became an Assembly of God minister and opened an Assembly of God Church in Walls, MS. As most people in the Elvis world know, Elvis also bought my mom the property to put her church on in Walls, MS. He then bought her a Pontiac Grand Prix to use in her ministry. My mom used the bible Elvis gave her for many years and then gave it to my sister, Karen Sue (Susie). My sister used the bible herself for a number of years and then put it in a box for safe keeping and put it in her closet. My son, Jamie bought my mom and dad’s house about three years ago and was going through the boxes that were left in the closet. He found the bible and showed it to me. I had forgotten all about it and I told him to put it up somewhere for safe keeping. My mom and my sister both used the bible daily and both made notations and underlined verses that were of particular importance to them. There are other underlined passages and marks made in the bible that are not my mom’s or my sister’s handwriting. I can only assume that Elvis made them since it was his bible and no one else had access to it.

The bible, with white silk bookmark also marked in blue ink handwriting “Peggy Pritchett” with her address on both sides, measures 7 by 4 3/4 by 1 inch and is accompanied by a letter of authenticity from Graceland Authenticated. Also included is a modern print of a famous photo of Elvis and Gary from the 1950s. The white bible shows signs of heavy use with wear and surface soiling on the covers and binding. The interior pages are also heavily marked, creased and worn. Several pages are torn or ripped, but still intact. The considerable wear reflects a well used tome. Very Good to Excellent condition.

Elvis Presley Owned Bible Given to Him By Gary Pepper at 1957 Graceland Christmas Eve Party - With Graceland Authenticated LOA
Bidding
Current Bidding (Reserve Has Been Met)
Minimum Bid: $5,000
Final prices include buyers premium: $9,200
Estimate: $10,000 - $12,000
Number Bids: 4
Auction closed on Saturday, January 16, 2021.
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