Auctions

Elvis and Colonel Tom Parker’s ‘Lost’ Jewelry Coming to Auction

AuctionsAug 03, 2022

Elvis and Colonel Tom Parker’s ‘Lost’ Jewelry Coming to Auction

The sale includes pieces “The King” gifted to his longtime manager, as well as jewelry Elvis owned and wore on stage.

Gifted to Parker by “The Little Colonel” in 1971, the watch marks a significant time in Elvis’ career, as he was touring and had begun his legendary residency at the Hilton in Las Vegas. Minimum bid is $5,000. (Photo courtesy Kruse GWS Auctions)
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Los Angeles—Jewelry belonging to “the man who made Elvis Presley”—Colonel Tom Parker—that was believed to be lost for decades is coming to auction.

Held by Kruse GWS Auctions, “The Lost Collection of Colonel Tom Parker & Elvis Presley” auction is scheduled for Aug. 27 in Los Angeles.

The sale will feature more than 40 pieces of jewelry Elvis either gave to Parker, had made for Parker, or were gifted to Parker by friends and associates in show business who were connected to Elvis.

They serve as a kind of timeline tracing the progression of Elvis’ career and sometimes tumultuous relationship with Parker, who became the megastar’s manager in 1956 and remained a confidante throughout his career.

The relationship between Elvis and Parker, in fact, is the central theme of “Elvis,” the new movie about the singer’s life starring Cartier ambassador Austin Butler as Elvis and Tom Hanks as Parker, with the movie told from Parker’s perspective.

One of the most important pieces in the collection, according to Kruse GWS Auctions, is a 37 mm 14-karat yellow gold Vacheron Constantin watch given to Parker by brothers Julian and Jean Aberbach, the founders of music publishing house Hill and Range.

The Aberbachs were instrumental in Elvis’ transition from Sun Records in Memphis to RCA Records in New York, a move that elevated him from a regional sensation to a national star and benefitted the brothers as well, as they secured the publishing rights for many of his biggest hits.

Known as the “Aberbach Watch,” the words “With love from Julian and Jean” are inscribed on the caseback.

SEE: Tom Parker and Elvis’ Jewelry 
Another piece in the auction commemorates one of The King’s later successes, 1973’s “Elvis, Aloha From Hawaii,” the first live performance ever telecast worldwide. 
 
While in Hawaii, Elvis bought the colonel a pair of 14-karat two-tone gold, diamond and ruby snowman cufflinks. 

A nod to Parker’s self-given nickname, “The Snowman,” the cufflinks were custom-made and even depict the snowmen smoking cigars, which Parker liked to do. 

The collection also includes a number of pieces of elephant jewelry Elvis gave him—Parker, who started his career as a carnival worker, was particularly fond of the pachyderm—and a medallion Elvis and Priscilla gifted Parker’s first wife, Marie Mott, for their anniversary. 

Parker was married to Mott from 1935 until her death in 1986. 

The medallion is 14-karat yellow gold with ruby and diamond accents. Priscilla personally had the words “Happy Anniversary Aunt Marie Love Elvis & Priscilla” engraved on the back, said the auction house.

 Related stories will be right here … 

“This collection has been sought after by collectors and auction houses worldwide for decades and it was believed to be lost. When we were chosen to represent it, we immediately contacted Priscilla Presley who graciously reminisced about the moments each piece of jewelry represents,” said Brigitte Kruse, founder and CEO of Kruse GWS Auctions.

“I cannot state the importance of celebrating Elvis’ legacy enough and giving back to the fans is most important to me. Elvis has the most loving and adoring fans, and this is for all of them.”

Priscilla acted as a consultant and historian for the sale, contributing hand-signed letters of description.

In addition to Parker’s jewelry, the auction will include Elvis memorabilia, including personal jewelry and jewelry he wore on stage.

The auction of the “Lost Jewelry Collection of Elvis Presley and Colonel Tom Parker” is scheduled for Aug. 27 at 10 a.m. Pacific.

Interested parties can place their bids now on the GWS website as well as see additional items in the auction.

The auction takes place during the month that’s especially important to the singer’s fans. Elvis died on Aug. 16, 1977, and fans gather in Memphis, Tennessee at his former estate, Graceland, for “Elvis Week” every August to honor his memory.

It also comes as the Baz Luhrmann-directed “Elvis” biopic continues its tremendous box office run.

After six weeks in theaters, the movie has grossed $129 million in the U.S. and Canada, making it the third highest-grossing music biopic since the 1970s, according to Billboard.
Based in Los Angeles, Kruse GWS Auctions specializes in Hollywood memorabilia, as well as fine jewelry and watches, royal artifacts and more.

Kruse is the auction house that sold Marlon Brando’s record-setting “Godfather” Rolex in 2019.

It’s also auctioned off pieces from The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll before, including a chunky 14-karat gold and diamond “Taking Care of Business” ring, which sold for more than $400,000 in late 2020. 

Michelle Graffis the editor-in-chief at National Jeweler, directing the publication’s coverage both online and in print.

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