For anyone who buys a farm with a barn on it or is tasked with clearing out a barn there is always a great moment of suspense when the doors are opened for the first time to reveal the inside. What will be in there? Will the barn be hiding a rare car or airplane or will there just be a lot of dust and bird droppings. For a lucky few, the contents of a barn can be worth millions.
People that are known by one name and are not Brazilian soccer stars are rare. Elvis Presley, or just Elvis to his fans, is one such person. He was adored by millions and his music still lives on to this day. His home in Memphis, Tennessee is one of the city’s top tourist attractions and his impersonators are everywhere. They can even marry you. Elvis memorabilia is valuable and extremely collectable so it was not everyday that his car came up for auction.
With fame and fortune came expensive cars. Elvis owned a 1960 Aston Martin DB4 Series II Sports Saloon Mercedes. At some point the car was abandoned and forgotten in a barn until it was found in 1996. Without being restored the car was put up for auction and was expected to pull in about $83,000. It didn’t. It brought in $110,000! Only the coolest cats drove Aston Martins.
This was not the only car belonging to The King to be found in a barn. While in the army and stationed in Germany Elvis bought a few of the rare BMW 507’s. The car was originally white but legend has it that so many of his female admirers kissed the car leaving lipstick imprints that he broke down and had the car painted red. Eventually the car was forgotten and left to the elements in a barn in California. Only about 250 of these cars were ever made so finding one was an incredible find in itself and this particular one was discovered in 2006. Its restoration would have been attempted even if the car did not belong to Elvis but that made the restoration even more exciting.
Now not everything found in a barn can belong to Elvis. In the mid-90s an urban legend made its way through the news cycles about Elvis’ old Harley Davidson motorcycle being found in a barn. Allegedly it was a gift from a fan and was inscribed “To Elvis from Priscilla” or some variation. Harley then bought the bike for four million dollars so it could put it in its museum in Milwaukee. Elvis did own several Harleys, four of them to be exact, and he rode them hard but all of the Harleys that he owned are accounted for, one is in Milwaukee at the Harley-Davidson Museum but was already in the collection when this legend began to circulate. The others are at Graceland along with his Honda bike. So at the very least, the next time a friend tells you about someone finding The King’s Hog in a barn you can set them straight.