Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Elvis Cadillacs

Bought for $10,000 on June 12, 1956, originally white with a black interior, Elvis squashed a handful of grapes on the fender and told the customiser, Jimmy Sanders of Memphis that was the colour he wanted. The upholstery was changed to white roll and pleated leather, and the floor covered in mouton fur dyed purple.
It is believed Elvis always had problems with this car, which is probably why he traded it in on December 23rd 1957. The car was then purchased by a fan of Elvis's, Mrs Lena Moskovitz of Memphis for $4893. This lady later married and moved with to Phenix City, Alabama.

She had a food store on 431 South and the Caddy sat there under a carport for many years. During this time many people (presumably aware of it's original owner) tried to buy the car, but she would not sell it. She passed away in 1974 and her husband moved away. The car was abandoned in an open field where it weathered badly.
On July 31st 1976 the car was sold at auction to used car dealer James N. Cantrell of Columbus, Georgia for $975!

This made news across the USA and the next day the new owner was offered $10,000 for it, but turned it down. Instead he started a slow, ground up $28,000 restoration, hoping to show it to Elvis when it was finished. Unfortunately Elvis passed away before he had a chance.
The car's first showing was in Tupelo, Mississippi, Elvis's birthplace. It then went on a tours and TV shows.

After touring for a couple of years, it was leased to the Guinness Book of Records Museum in Niagara Falls, Canada for about ten years. Many large offers have been made to purchase this car, however about ten years ago it was decided the car should remain at Graceland indefinitely, where it is now proudly displayed in the auto museum.

1 comment:

  1. I was good friends with Mr. Cantrell's son Mack. I rode in that car when his dad picked us up from grade school. this must have been in early 1978. One of my best memories of waving to my school friends as we rode by in style.