The auction house that sold Michael Jackson’s death bed will now auction off another music king’s resting place.
The original crypt that housed the body of Elvis Presley and his mother Gladys following Elvis’ death in 1977 will be auctioned off at Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills as part of the “Music Icons” auction from June 23-24.
But isn’t Elvis buried at Graceland? Yes, Elvis and his mother were buried permanently at his Memphis homestead Graceland – two months after his death. While Elvis’ his father waited for approval from the state of Tennessee to bury the Presleys at Graceland, Elvis was laid to rest in the tomb that’s up for sale, inside a granite and marble mausoleum at Memphis’ Forest Hill Cemetery.
Darren Julien, the president of Julien’s Auctions, called into Los Angeles station K-EARTH this morning (May 29) to explain just how he was able to get a hold of the King’s crypt.
“We were contacted by the cemetery to sell it,” Julien says. “Basically it’s been shut empty since Elvis was in it however many years ago. He was laid to rest there when he first passed and then they had to get permits from the state to bury him on Graceland.”
Julien explains that he didn’t have to get the family’s permission to sell Elvis’ crypt since the cemetery owns the tomb.
“It’s a chance of a lifetime for one person somewhere to have the bragging rights to say that they are going to be entombed where Elvis Presley was,” Julien says. “We’re getting a lot of response actually… people are dying to get into it.”
If you want to jump at the chance of lying in the King’s tomb for eternity, it will cost you a pretty penny. The starting bid is set at $100,000, but Julien estimates it to reach a steep price. The price tag also includes opening and closing of the crypt, a memorial inscription, and the use of a chapel for committal services. It should be noted that the tomb’s next owner will not be able to move the crypt out of Memphis’ Forest Hill Cemetery.
If buying Elvis’ tomb is a little too morbid for your taste, Julien’s “Music Icons” auction (June 23-24) will feature more than 900 items owned by artists, ranging from The Beatles to Whitney Houston.
–Britt Brickel, K-EARTH 101 FM; Jillian Mapes, CBS Local