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Elvis & Priscilla Presley’s Wedding Day

Simon Templar

During a party at his home at Bad Nauheim, Germany, in 1959, Elvis met Priscilla.

They were immediately attracted to each other, even though Priscilla was only 14 years old at the time and Elvis was serving in the Army. They continued to see each other, and on May 1st, 1967, they were married in Las Vegas at the Aladdin Hotel.

Elvis Presley in Jailhouse Rock (1957) Photo Credit

Elvis Presley in Jailhouse Rock (1957) Photo Credit

The wedding, which had been arranged by Colonel Parker, Elvis’s talent manager, was only 8 minutes long and was said to have been something to maximize the publicity of the singer. Not many guests were given entry, and even some that had been invited personally by Elvis were not allowed in for the ceremony itself. A press conference was held immediately after the extremely hurried wedding, followed by a breakfast reception that cost $10,000, attended by friends and family. Also, business associates from RCA and MGM were invited, and of course people from the William Morris Agency.

Some of Elvis’ closest friends were not invited to the wedding ceremony, causing many rifts between them. His friend Red West, in particular, was extremely upset by the snub, as Elvis had personally invited him and his wife, who were then refused entry at the last minute. West had been with Elvis since the beginning, and Elvis had been the best man at his own wedding. The insult was so great for West that he quit working for Elvis. Others who also felt snubbed by Elvis held deep resentments that lasted many years. Parker was considered by many of the disappointed guests to be at fault for turning the occasion into a publicity stunt.

After the reception, the happy couple boarded a private jet and traveled to Palm Springs for a short honeymoon. By May 4th, they were back in Memphis and on retreat at their ranch for a three-week break. Some of Elvis’s inner circle joined them, but mostly the couple was left alone to enjoy each other’s company without the intrusion of the media. Priscilla is said to have enjoyed the chance to be a “proper wife” to her new husband, without maids or housekeepers doing everything for them. The opportunity to cook and keep everything clean was a novelty for her. On May 29th, the couple held a reception at Graceland for the friends and family who weren’t able to attend the ceremony on May 1st.

Very soon after the wedding, Priscilla discovered she was pregnant; she was upset, as she felt that a pregnancy so early in their marriage would come between herself and Elvis. She and Elvis had discussed using birth control pills, but Elvis had decided against them. Soon, the couple was choosing whether or not to abort their unborn child. Their only child would be born exactly nine months after their wedding – they named her Lisa Marie.

The Presleys with newborn Lisa Marie, February 1968.

The Presleys with newborn Lisa Marie, February 1968.

Later, in Priscilla’s autobiography Elvis and Me, she tells how she started to take private dance lessons around the time of the birth of their child.

Read another story from us: To be a king, you have to eat like one: Elvis Presley’s favorite sandwich

Elvis was filming Live a Little, Love a Little, and with Elvis so busy, Priscilla found herself attracted to her instructor, whom she calls Mark in her book, and with whom she had a short affair. She felt regret at the affair but also realized that, at the time, she wasn’t getting all she needed from her relationship with Elvis.