Graceland

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Graceland is a large white-columned mansion and 13.8-acre (5.6 ha) estate that was home to Elvis Presley in Memphis, Tennessee. It is located at 3764 Elvis Presley Boulevard in the vast Whitehaven community about 9 miles (14.5 km) from Downtown and less than four miles (6 km) north of the Mississippi border.[4] It currently serves as a museum. It was opened to the public on June 7, 1982. The site was listed in the National Register of Historic Places on November 7, 1991 and declared a National Historic Landmark on March 27, 2006. Graceland has become the second most-visited private home in America with over 600,000 visitors a year; only the White House has more visitors per year.[5]

Elvis Presley died at the estate on August 16, 1977. Presley, his parents Gladys and Vernon Presley, and his grandmother, are buried there in what is called the Meditation Gardens.

Contents

History

Graceland Farms was originally owned by S.C. Toof, founder of S.C. Toof & Co., a commercial printing firm in Memphis, who was previously the pressroom foreman of the Memphis newspaper, the Memphis Daily Appeal. The grounds were named after Toof's daughter, Grace, who inherited the farm. Soon after, the portion of the land designated as Graceland today was given to her nephews and niece. It was Grace Toof's niece, Ruth Moore, who, in 1939 together with her husband Dr. Thomas Moore, built the present American "colonial" style mansion.

Architecture and modifications

The mansion is constructed of tan limestone and consists of twenty-three rooms, including eight bedrooms and bathrooms. The entrance way contains four Temple of the Winds columns and two large lions perched on both sides of the portico.

After purchasing the property Presley carried out extensive modifications to suit his needs and tastes, including: a fieldstone wall surrounding the grounds, a wrought-iron music-themed gate, a swimming pool, a racquetball court, and the famous "Jungle Room" which features an indoor waterfall, among other modifications. In February and October 1976, the Jungle Room was converted into a recording studio, where Presley recorded the bulk of his final two albums, From Elvis Presley Boulevard, Memphis, Tennessee and Moody Blue; these were his final known recordings in a studio setting.[6]

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