Was Elvis Actually Born in Memphis?

While most people think that Elvis is "from" Memphis - and that is true, he lived there most of his life - he was actually born in Tupelo, Mississippi. 

Elvis was born on January 8, 1935 in a two-room home that his parents had built the year before, in 1934. The house is a small, shotgun-style home that had electricity and was built for just $180. Elvis also had a twin brother, Jessie Garon, who was stillborn. Elvis lived with his parents, Gladys and Vernon Presley in the house in Tupelo until he was 13 years old. Tupelo is about 80 miles southeast of Memphis, Tennessee. 

According to the estate, Elvis began his musical journey while in Tupelo. He was exposed to a variety of American music in his early life, including gospel and church music, blues music in another neighborhood his family lived in in Tupelo (Shaker Rag), and country music on the radio. 

Elvis Moves To Memphis

In 1948, Elvis and his parents moved to Memphis, where Elvis enrolled in the eighth grade at Humes High School. The family lived in several different houses throughout their time in Memphis, most notably Lauderdale Courts in northern downtown.

Visiting Elvis' Birthplace

Today, you can visit the house where Elvis Presley was born in Tupelo, Mississippi. The home has been preserved and is open for tours along with a Museum and Events Center, a Chapel, a Church, a Reflecting Pool, Amphitheater, Gift Shop, and more. There are also several Elvis statues. 

The Birthplace attraction is open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Sundays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. It's located at 306 Elvis Presley Drive, Tupelo, Mississippi. Tickets for the house only are $8 for adults and $5 for kids ages 7 to 12. For the grand tour that includes the other attractions on the site, tickets are $17 for adults and $8 for kids ages 7 to 12.

According to Elvis' Birthplace, more than 100,000 visitors each year travel from around the world to visit the home where the King of Rock 'n' Roll was born. 

Celebrating Elvis' Birthday

Even though Elvis was born in Tupelo, Mississippi, you can still celebrate his January birth at his home and final resting place in Memphis at Graceland Mansion. There are two "Elvis Weeks" each year, one in January to mark the King's birthday, and one in August to commemorate the anniversary of his passing. 

For Elvis' Birthday Week, you can expect several days of programming hosted by Graceland including live music, a cake cutting party, panels, auctions, and more.

More Frequently Asked Questions About Elvis

Updated by Holly Whitfield, November 2017