Elvis Presley And The Events Of 1977
Source: Elvis Australia
August 16, 2017
January - Bill Clinton takes public office for the first time, as attorney general
January 1 - The album 'Elvis In Demand' released. Highest chart position #12
January 1 - Australia's population reaches 14,000,000
January 14 - Australian actor Peter Finch dies (1916-1977)
January 20 - Jimmy Carter is sworn in as the 39th President of the United States
January - Alex Haley's 'Roots' attracts the largest television audience in history
February 2 - Elvis Presley No-Shows RCA Recording Session - Press scimitar
February 12 - 21 Elvis tours in concert.
February 12 - Hollywood. Ca. Sprtatorium
February 13 - West Palm Beach. Fla. Auditorium
February 14 - St. Petersburg, Fla. Bay Front Center
February 15 - Orlando, Fla. Sports Stadium
February 16 - Montgomery. Ala. Garrett Coliseum
February 17 - Savannah, GA. Civic Center
February 18 - Columbia, S. Carolina. Carolina Coliseum
February 19 - Johnson City, Tenn. Civic Center Freedom Hall
February 20 - Charlotte, N. C. Coliseum
February 21 - Charlotte, N. C. Coliseum
March - 'Welcome To My World' album released, Highest position U.S. #44 U.K. #7 AU #58
March - Australia wins Centenary Cricket Test against England by 45 runs - same margin as 1877
March 3, After his February '77 tour Elvis returned to Memphis. Elvis had planned a vacation in Hawaii in order to show the islands to Ginger Alden. Before leaving, he takes care of several business matters, including a loan to Dr. Nick for an additional $55.000 at 7 percent interest with a repayment schedule of twenty-five years. Also, at his father's urging, in the early hours of the morning of March 3, Elvis finally signed his will, which designates Vernon as executor and trustee, entrusting to him total responsibility for the 'health education, comfortable maintenance and welfare' of himself, Grandma, and Lisa Marie, the sole heir. Ginger is witness to the will. Ginger Alden, a local beauty queen (Miss Traffic Safety, Miss Mid-South and runner-up Miss Tennessee University), who has the distinction of being Elvis' last girlfriend and the last person to see him alive on the night he died. Elvis was introduced to Terry Alden, the present Miss Tennessee, by George Klein on November 19, 1976. Terry brought her two sisters Rosemary and Ginger with her. George thought it was Terry to whom Elvis would be attracted, but Elvis was immediately drawn to the youngest sister. Elvis' Saturday-night date with Ginger started as a flight to view the Memphis skyline but ended with a trip to Vegas, chaperoned by his cousin Patsy and her husband. Ginger called her mother for permission.
Friday, March 4, Elvis and his party of thirty arrive in Hawaii, checking into the Hilton Rainbow Tower.
After two days Elvis and the Alden sisters and a couple of the guys move to a beach house at Kailua.
Elvis playing house with Ginger's sister Rosemary.
March 12, A visit to the USS Arizona memorial is canceled as Elvis prepares for an abruptly scheduled return to Memphis. He has gotten sand in his eye, and Dr. Nick, concerned that he may have scratched his cornea, suggests that he recuperate at home for a week or so before going out on tour once again.
March 23 - 30 Elvis tours in concert
March 23 - Tempe. Arizona. Arizona State Univ.
March 24 - Amarillo. Texas. Civic Center
March 25 - Norman, Oklahoma. Univ. Of Oklahoma
March 26 - Norman, Oklahoma. Univ. Of Oklahoma
March 27 - Abilene, Texas. Taylor County Coliseum
March 28 - Austin, Texas. Municipal Auditorium
March 29 - Alexandria, LA. Rapides Parish Coliseum
March 30 - Alexandria, LA. Rapides Parish Coliseum
April 1 - 5 Elvis is hospitalized in Memphis and tour shows scheduled for March 31-April 3 are canceled.
April 1 - Elvis Admitted To Baptist Hospital 'Entertainer Elvis Presley was admitted to Baptist Hospital early today after canceling a show at the last minute in Baton Rouge, La., and flying to Memphis with complaints of intestinal flu '... - The Memphis Press-Scimitar
April 6 - Elvis at Home: Hospital on Call 'Elvis Presley was released from Baptist Hospital at 4 am yesterday [April 5] ... He decided to keep the [Hospital] rooms reserved ... He is feeling fine and looking forward to returning to his personal appearance tours that begin April 21 at Greensboro, NC'. - The Commercial Appeal
April 21 - May 31 Elvis tours in concert.
April 21 - Greensboro, N. C. Coliseum
April 22 - Detroit, Michigan. Olympia Stadium
April 23 - Toledo, Ohio. Univ. of Toledo
April 24 - Ann Arbor, Michigan. Crisler Arena: RCA records live 'Unchained Melody' and 'Little Darlin' that will be released on the album Moody Blue.
April 25 - Saginaw, Michigan. Saginaw Center RCA records 'If You Love Me' that will be released on the album Moody Blue.
April 26 - Kalamazoo, Michigan. Wings Stadium
April 27 - Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Milwaukee Arena
April 28 - Green Bay, Wisconsin. Brown County Veterans
April 29 - Duluth, Minn. Duluth Arena
April 30 - St. Paul, Minn. Civic Center
May 1 - Chicago, Ill. Chicago Stadium
May 2 - Chicago, Ill. Chicago Stadium
May 3 - Saginaw, Michigan. Saginaw Center
May 20 - Knoxville, Tenn. Univ. Of Tennessee
May 21 - Louisville, Ky. Freedom Hall
May 22 - Largo, Md. Capital Center
May 22 - 60 second RCA Elvis radio commercials played in Australia (Welcome To My World)
May 23 - Providence, R.I. Civic Center
May 24 - Augusta, Maine. Civic Center
May 25 - Rochester, N.Y. Community War Memorial
May 26 - Binghamton. N.Y.
May 26, Elvis' private jet, the Lisa Marie, had just landed after a Rochester-to-Binghamton, N.Y. flight. Grob, the chief of security, had just warned Elvis that they were in a restricted gun-carry area.
It was about 3 a.m. May 26, and a crowd of fans and dignitaries, including Elvis' manager, Col. Tom Parker, and a high-ranking law officer, had gathered to welcome Elvis.
Still wearing pajama-like karate gear, Elvis began descending the portable stairs when the crowd started cheering as a spotlight hit him. As he lifted his arms to acknowledge the reception, two loaded semiautomatic Colt pistols fell from his waistband and bounced down the steps. 'Elvis had a sheepish grin as he came down'.
Waiting was the local police chief or ranking officer. Elvis 'completely disarmed the man by shaking his hand and introducing himself'. 'The guy handed him the guns and said, 'I believe these are yours Mr. Presley'. Elvis stuck 'em back in his waistband'. The guns are now on display at Graceland. At another concert, around the same time, a loaded .22-caliber derringer popped out of one of Elvis' stage boots and bounced on the stage right in front of rhythm guitarist John Wilkinson, 'who did not like guns'. It was retrieved about 20 minutes later.
May 27 - Binghamton. N.Y.
May 28 - Philadelphia, Pa. Spectrum
May 29 - Baltimore, Md. Civic Center
May 29 - 60 second RCA Elvis radio commercials played in Australia (Welcome To My World)
May 30 - Jacksonville, Fla. Coliseum
The ticket below from a canceled concert.
The last four shows of the March / April 1977 tour (Baton Rouge, Mobile, Macon, Jacksonville) were canceled. These shows were then rescheduled at the end of the late May / June 1977 tour. However, these tickets were printed with the planning being that Elvis was to perform in Asheville on May 30, 1977. If you look at the listing (below) of the planned August 1977 tour you can see that Elvis was to perform there on August 26, 1977. So this date was pushed back the Asheville show until August due to this scheduling. Of course, the August show in Asheville never took place because Elvis died. The tickets for the May 1977 Asheville show were printed and on sale prior to the original cancellation of the late March / early April 1977 shows.
Canceled unused ticket for Elvis Concert, Asheville, May 30, 1977.
May 31 - Baton Rouge, La. La State Univ
June 1 - 2 Elvis tours in concert.
June 1 - Macon, Ga. Coliseum
June 2 - Mobile, Ala. Municipal Auditorium
June - The Single 'Way Down' released - Highest chart position #18 U.K. #1 AU #6
June - President Carter visits Australia
June 17 - 26 - Elvis tours in concert. Shows on June 19, 20, and 21 are recorded by RCA and videotaped by CBS-TV for an upcoming live album and television special. Footage from the show on the 20th is not used in the show. The special will be called 'Elvis in Concert'. It will air in early October after Elvis' death in August. The camera gives a shocking picture of Elvis' poor health in his final days. Still, some of the song performances are great. He still had his voice.
June 17 - June 25 Elvis tours in concert.
June 17 - Springfield, Mo. Southwest Mo. State Univ.
June 18 - Kansas City, Mo. Kemper Arena
June 19 - Omaha, Nebraska. Omaha Civic Center Recorded by RCA for Elvis in Concert
Unchained Melody: Rapid City: June 21, 1977
June 22 - Sioux Falls, S.D. Sioux Falls Arena
June 23 - Des Moines, Iowa. Veteran's Memorial Auditorium
June 24 - Madison, Wisc. Dane County Coliseum
June 25 - Cincinnati, Ohio. Riverfront Coliseum
June 26, - Indianapolis, Indiana Market Square Arena - Elvis' very last concert performance
June 26 - 60 second RCA Elvis radio commercials played in Australia (Welcome To My World)
26 June 8.30 pm Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, In.
June 27- August 15, 1977
Elvis relaxes in Memphis and prepares for the next leg of touring for 1977.
June 27 - August 15 Elvis relaxes in Memphis and prepares for the next leg of touring for 1977
June 30 - The United States introduces Cruise missiles to replace the B-1 bomber
July - The album Moody Blue released - Highest chart position U.S. #3 U.K. #3 AU. #3
July 22 - MOSCOW (AP) - Pity Poor Elvis - So Say Reds 'To hear the Soviets tell it, rock star Elvis Presley is now a broken and forgotten man demonstrating to the world the heartlessness of the American system of exploitation. ...Today this 42-year-old man has lost his taste for life '...
August 1 - The book 'Elvis - What happened ?' released
August 11, Elvis pays his respects to his mother at Forest Hill Cemetery.
August 12 - The Space Shuttle Enterprise makes it's first successful solo flight
August 15 - The album 'Moody Blue' enters Australian album charts.
August 12, Elvis was unable to get a copy of the film 'Star Wars' to view with his daughter Lisa Marie, so they watched the James Bond film 'The Spy Who Loved Me' instead. (Star Wars was released to theaters in the US on May 25, 1977). As they came home, Lisa was sitting on Ginger Alden's lap, holding her bag of popcorn from the theater. The photo below snapped just four days before his death is the last ever taken with his daughter Lisa Marie.
Shortly after midnight, Elvis returns to Graceland from a late-night visit to the dentist. The photo below is the last known photo of Elvis taken on his return from the dentist.
Through the early morning of the 16th Elvis takes care of last-minute tour details and relaxes with family and staff. He is to fly to Portland, Maine that night and do a show there on the 17th, then continue the scheduled tour. Elvis retires to his master suite at Graceland around 7:00 AM to rest for his evening flight. By late morning, Elvis Presley is dead of heart failure. The news is announced by mid-afternoon. In a matter of hours the shock registers around the world.
'A Memphis Fire Department ambulance from Engine House 29 at 2147 Elvis Presley Boulevard responded to the call at 2:33 pm and by 2:56 pm had taken Presley to the emergency room at Baptist Hospital, seven miles away from his Whitehaven home' 'It was just a routine call. Someone was having difficulty breathing at 3764 Elvis Presley Boulevard. Such calls had come in before when people had collapsed on the street as they waited to catch a glimpse of their singing idol. The call was received by the normal procedure, said Charlie Crosby, an emergency medical technician. We only knew it was his house'. - The Commercial Appeal
The News Headlines
Death Captures Crown of Rock and Roll - The Commercial Appeal - 'The ambulance hit the gate as it was going in [to Graceland] ... There was severe cardiovascular disease present ... Dr. Fransisco said ... there was no indication of drug abuse of any kind. He said the only evidence of drugs involved those Presley was taking for his physical condition '...
A Lonely Life Ends on Elvis Presley Boulevard - Memphis Press-Scimitar
Rock Idol Elvis Presley Dies at 42 - The Washington Post - Elvis Presley, who revolutionized American popular music with his earthy singing style and became a hero to two generations of rock 'n' roll fans, died yesterday in Memphis, Tenn. He was 42.
Reaction among fans, performers and music industry executives elsewhere was also emotional. In Santiago, Chile, newspapers stopped the presses and radio stations changed their evening programming to recount the life of 'El Rey de Rock 'n' Roll'. In Memphis, the telephone system was reported unable to handle the volume of calls coming into the city from around the country. Hundreds of weeping fans gathered outside Baptist Memorial and Graceland Mansion last night.
Two European radio stations also suspended regular programming as soon as Presley's death was announced. Radio Luxembourg, the continent's most widely listened-to pop station, canceled all its commercials to play Presley's music nonstop.
'This is the end of rock 'n' roll', said Bob Moore Merlis, an executive with Warner Bros. Records, who compiled an anthology of Presley's early material several years ago for RCA.
'The void he will leave is impossible to gauge', said Pat Boone.
One Hour Battle Fails .. King Elvis Dies - The Herald (Australia)
Fans Fight To Peer At Elvis - The Herald, Late edition (Australia)
Fat, 42 And Fazed - The Sun (Australia) - 'He couldn't sing anymore', 'His stage appearances were a joke because his stomach bulged over his gold lame, sequined suits' 'Presley's movie career ended in 1969 after about 60 films, all with roughly the same plot'
[From John Fraser in New York.]
Elvis Presley Is Dead - Daily Mirror (England)
Rocks First Superstar Elvis Presley, 42, Dies - Rocky Mountain News
King Elvis Dead - The Sun (England)
All Roads Lead to Memphis - Evening Standard (England)
August 17 - Elvis was to have begun another tour, starting with a concert in Portland, Maine
August 17, 1977 - Cumberland County Civic Center, Portland, Maine
August 18, 1977 - Cumberland County Civic Center, Portland, Maine
August 19, 1977 - Utica Memorial Auditorium, Utica, New York
August 20, 1977 - Onondaga County War Memorial, Syracuse, New York
August 21, 1977 - Civic Center, Hartford, Connecticut
August 22, 1977 - Nassau Veterans Coliseum, Uniondale, New York
August 23, 1977 - University Of Kentucky Rupp Arena, Lexington, Kentucky
August 24, 1977 - Roanoke Civic Center, Roanoke, Virginia
August 25, 1977 - Cumberland County Memorial Arena, Fayetteville, North Carolina
August 26, 1977 - Asheville Civic Center Arena, Asheville, North Carolina
August 27, 1977 - Mid-South Coliseum, Memphis, Tennessee
August 28, 1977 - Mid-South Coliseum, Memphis, Tennessee
August 18 - Final Glimpse of Fallen Star Lues Faithful 'An estimated 50,000 to 100,000 persons visited Graceland during the day Wednesday [August 17] to pay their respects ... Presley's body was placed in the foyer just inside the front door. It was the first time the mansion had been open to the public since Presley purchased it in 1957 ... Throughout the day the crowds moved single- file into the front foyer. The visitors were quickly routed out of the house as soon as they viewed the body ... The gates were closed at 6:30 pm to the distress of many fans [Below], and at 6:00 it was estimated that 10,000 persons were in line and that 20,000 to 25,000 had filed into the mansion'
Eddie Fadal, who described himself as a 'lifelong friend' of Elvis, emerged from the mansion to give reporters a picture of what was taking place inside. 'Things are very quiet' he said 'People are sitting around the coffin in the living room. Some are crying, but everyone is pretty subdued'. Fadal said Ginger Aldren, the late singer's fiancée, was taking his death 'well' but that Priscilla Presley, the singer's ex-wife and mother of their daughter Lisa, was 'taking it very, very hard'.
August 18 - Elvis' Funeral Service - 'C.W. Bradley, minister of Woodvale Church of Christ conducted the brief service at the mansion '... - August 19. 'We are to honor the memory of a man loved by millions. ... But Elvis was a frail human being. And he would be the first to admit his weaknesses. Perhaps because of his rapid rise to fame and fortune, he was thrown into temptations that some never experience. Elvis would not want anyone to think that he had no flaws or faults. But now that he's gone, I find it more helpful to remember his good qualities, and I hope you do too'. - From the August 19 editions of The Commercial Appeal and The Tennessean - Nashville
August 19 - Elvis Burial Hushed, Private 'The 2 p.m. funeral services were held in Presley's music room, which adjoins the living room'. During the services, a gospel quartet sang 'How Great Thou Art' and Sweet, Sweet Spirit'. Guests left Vernon Presley, the singer's father, alone after the last words were spoken. It was Vernon Presley whose car led the procession afterward when shortly after 3:30 p.m., guests and family members left the grounds. Behind that car followed the white hearse that bore the un-draped coffin. Behind the hearse rode Presley's divorced wife Priscilla, her face red behind her veil, clutching9-year-old Lisa Marie to her breast'. - The Tennessean - Nashville
August 19 - Rock 'N' Roll King Entombed 'The flower-laden coffin of Elvis Presley was carried into it's resting place at Forest Hill Midtown Cemetery'... 'The Crypt in the mausoleum where the body was placed was later sealed and mortared over, then covered with a marble slab'.
August 19 - Swerving Cars Kills Two Elvis Mourners 'I can't believe Elvis is really dead' Alice Hovatar was telling Patrolman W.C. Greenwood early Thursday [August 18] as she and Joanne Johnson passed the time with idle conversation in front of Graceland Mansion. It was about 3:30 am, and moments later the two 19-year olds from Monroe, La., would be killed instantly by a driver in a no-traffic lane ... Greenwood looked up in time to jump out of the way'.
August 19 - Groucho Marx dies (1890-1977)
August 20 - Elvis' Father Expresses Thanks 'It lightened my grief somewhat as I watched the tributes to my son that was shown from people throughout the world ... I am very sorry that all of the people who came to Memphis were not able to view the body, but there was not enough time ... I would like to express my sincere and deepest sympathy to the families of the girls in the very unfortunate and regrettable thing that happened at the gate'.
August 20 - Presley Fans Buy Big - The Age - Melbourne, Australia 'Melbourne ... she ain't nothin' but a town agog. The death of Elvis Presley, the 'King' of Rock, left most people all shook up rather than crying all the time. City record shops reported the greatest surge in buying of Elvis' records for many years, and they swamped Elvis' label, RCA, with demands for more stocks'. 'Coincidentally, RCA had nominated August as Elvis Presley Month and supplied stores with extra records. But by evening, much was bought up'.
August 23 - Elvis Will Names 3 Close Relatives 'Elvis Presley named his Father, Vernon Presley, executor of his fortune in a will probated here yesterday [August 22] afternoon, but [it] did not include his fiancée, Miss Ginger Alden, one of three witnesses who signed the will March 3, or his ex-wife Priscilla. An inventory of the singer's wealth believed to be millions of dollars is not expected to be filled for 60 days '... - The Commercial Appeal
August 27 - Body of Elvis' Mother Moved To mausoleum 'The body of Gladys Love Presley, was quietly unearthed and moved late yesterday [August 26] into the mausoleum where her son was entombed last week. In a 3 hour and 17 minute operation, 11 workers at Forest Hill Cemetery Midtown unearthed the massive steel and copper casket' ... 'Vernon Presley, the entertainer's father, made the decision '... - The Commercial Appeal
August 28 - Elvis was to have completed his tour with 2 shows in Memphis, August 27-28
August 30 - 3 Charged In Body-Stealing Plot 'Three Memphis men were charged yesterday [August 29] afternoon with criminal trespassing in connection with what Police Director E. Winslow Chapman said was a plot to steal the entombed body of Elvis Presley'. - The Commercial Appeal
August - Elvis Fans Hang Onto $600,000 Worth of Tickets 'Had Elvis Presley lived, more than 120,000 people would have paid about $1,300,000 ... Promoters, theater owners and lawyers must now tackle a problem they rarely encounter - what to do with an estimated $600,000 in tickets fans refuse to give up '...
September 8 Graceland Site For Graves Of Presley's 'An application to allow the bodies of Elvis Presley and his mother, Gladys, to be moved to the Meditation Garden at Presley's Graceland Mansion was submitted yesterday [September 7] to the board of Adjustment ... The request will be heard at the board's next meeting Sept. 28'
September 24 - Drawn Grand Final between North Melbourne and Collingwood in the VFL Grand Final. [Australian Rules Football] This is the only Grand Final draw to have occurred in the history of the game [102 years] Final scores North Melbourne 9.22 76 Collingwood 10.16 76
October 1 - North Melbourne defeats Collingwood in the Grand Final replay Final scores North Melbourne 21.25 151 d. Collingwood 19.10 124
October 3 - Bodies Of Elvis, Mother Are Moved 'The move was unannounced. Two white hearses escorted by eight city police officers and five Selby County deputies took the bodies of Elvis Presley and his mother, Mrs. Gladys Smith Presley, into the rear entrance of Graceland shortly after 7 last night [October 2]' ... 'Only a few watchers were outside the gates of Graceland when the cortège arrived, and at first some did not realize what they had seen ... The board of Adjustment gave permission last Wednesday to rebury the bodies on the south side of Graceland estate '...
October 3 - Elvis in Concert telecast on CBS
October - Alan Moffatt wins Bathurst, Australia's premier touring car race over 1000 Km
October 5 - Charges Against 3 Dropped, in Presley-Body Theft Case 'Trespassing charges against three men accused in a purported scheme to steal the body of Elvis Presley were dismissed yesterday [October 5] after the prosecutor said the city could not vouch for the truthfulness of its key witness'.
October - 'Elvis in Concert' album released - Highest chart position U.S. #5 UK #13 AU #17
October 14 - Bing Crosby dies (1903-1977)
November - 'My Way' released - Highest chart position U.S. #22 U.K. #9 AU. #6
November 9 - Israeli jets strike southern Lebanon
November 10 - Malcolm Fraser's Liberal Party wins the Australian Federal election.
December 25 - Charlie Chaplin dies on Christmas day (1889-1977)
Movie Releases of note from 1977
Smoky And The Bandit
The Eagle Has Landed
A Bridge Too Far
Cross Of Iron
Relevant Links :
Elvis Presley Dies at 42
Australian Press 1977
Elvis' Last Will And Testament
A Broken Heart... Hastened Death
World's At Standstill For Elvis' Fiancée
Fireman's Call To Graceland Was Anything But Routine
Elvis Presley Biography
Elvis returning to Graceland
Elvis Presley on Holiday in Hawaii: March 1977
Elvis Presley Louisville Kentucky: May 21st, 1977
Elvis Presley Macon, GA: June 1, 1977
Elvis Presley June 25, 1977: 8.30 pm Riverfront Coliseum, Cincinnati, Oh
Elvis Presley June 26, 1977: 8.30 pm Market Square Arena, Indianapolis, In.
Rock Idol Elvis Presley Dies at 42
Elvis' Funeral Procession August 17, 1977
A Broken Heart ... Hastened Death
World's At Standstill For Elvis' Fiancee
Firemen's Call To Graceland Was Anything But Routine
Elvis Presley and the Events Of 1977
Elvis Presley in the Australian Press 1977
Kathy Westmoreland Remembers: August 16, 1977
Elvis Presley Family History: 1669-1935
Elvis Presley Biography
Gladys and Vernon Presley: Elvis Presley's Mother and Father
Jessie D. McDowell (J.D.) Presley - Elvis Presleys Grandfather
Elvis Presley's Graceland - 3764 Elvis Presley Boulevard
The Priceless Gift: To Lisa Marie from Daddy
For a more (very) detailed history of Elvis Presley see our pages; starting at Elvis Presley 1935-1953
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