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|REHEARSAL USED GUITAR FROM 68 SPECIAL IN AUCTION
July 25, 2016 - Entertainment Weekly / Elvis Express Radio
|Elvis Presley Week is rapidly approaching at Graceland, and in honor of the celebration, several of the King’s personal items are going up for auction, including his electric guitar.
Invaluable.com is auctioning off Presley’s electric guitar that was used in rehearsal for the 1968 Elvis Special. The instrument features a cherry sunburst finish with mother-of-pearl
inlays in the fretboard, and also includes a modern Gibson hard-shell black case. The guitar has an estimated value of $30,000, but bids will begin at $10,000 when the auction
opens on August 13.
Along with the guitar are several other valuables from the icon, including Presley’s birth record, a black and gold outfit he performed in, an Indian ring, and a TCB necklace.
The guitar was gifted by Presley to Nancy Rooks, a maid and cook, and her husband, who has had the guitar in his possession for more than 25 years.
Elvis Presley Week takes place in Memphis, Tennessee August 10 through the 16. The auction for the electric guitar will begin on August 13 at 2 p.m. CT.
Below is what is listed for the auction....
Lot 124: 1960's Elvis Presley Owned Electric Guitar
Gifted to Graceland Maid and Cook Nancy Rooks' Husband
Estimate: $20,000 - $30,000
Nancy Rooks was hired at Graceland in May 1967 and stayed on as maid and cook until Graceland was opened to the public. She was responsible for cooking for Elvis and seeing
that he had what he needed. She was a fixture at Graceland, so it’s no surprise that when Mr. Rooks (Nancy’s husband) was having a conversation with Elvis and mentioned that he
no longer had a guitar, Elvis grabbed one of his and gifted it to Mr. Rooks. The offered electric guitar, much like a Gibson in style, is the very one that Elvis gave Mr. Rooks that
day. This electric guitar has a cherry sunburst finish with mother-of-pearl inlays in the fretboard. The back of the guitar shows all the expected signs of distress, and also has the
name "Elvis" written on the edge of the sunburst design, in an unknown hand. The guitar is stored within an included modern Gibson hard-shell black case.
The guitar shows signs of being played a great deal, with a heavily-worn area where the finish has been removed from strumming. Mr. Rooks obviously would have played the guitar
a great deal during the more than 25 years he owned it, and most of the use could be attributed to him. Elvis, though, also would have played the guitar during the years in the late
1960s when it resided at Graceland. One can imagine him picking up guitars with increasing regularity as the decade came to a close and performing music took precedence over
his movie career. In 1968, he would return in dramatic fashion with his NBC TV Special, now known as the "'68 Comeback Special," and the following year he was back on stage for
good as he embarked on a month of legendary shows at the International Hotel in Las Vegas. Also included is a letter from Stephen Shutts, who acquired the guitar directly from the
The letter reads, in part, "The Elvis Presley Electric Guitar was in fact owned by Nancy Rooks' husband and gifted to him by Elvis Presley when Mr. Rooks came by Graceland to
pickup Nancy after work. I, Stephen M. Shutts, acquired the guitar from Nancy and her husband, in person at their home outside of Memphis in 1997. At the time Mr. Rooks still
played guitar, and quite well I might add. He became emotional upon selling the guitar...I sold the guitar to Elvis-A-Rama and it was in turn sold to Greg Page." A letter from collector
Greg Page also accompanies the guitar, in which Page explains how an original letter from Nancy Rooks was lost. The guitar and case are also accompanied by a letter of
authenticity from Graceland Authenticated.
Condition Report: The guitar exhibits signs of heavy use and being well loved, with worn finish and nicks and scratches. Very Good condition overall.
Here is the direct link to the auction page