1959 Elvis Presley Autographs

Value (2012) | $4,000 Auction$5,500 Auction
Watch  

GUEST:
It's an Elvis Presley pass from in the Army. My husband was a major in Munich, and it was in 1959. And he came in and wanted an extended pass. And then Jim said to him, "Well, I'll give you a pass," he said, "if you sign one for me."

APPRAISER:
So he bartered.

GUEST:
Kind of.

APPRAISER:
He agreed to give Elvis an extension on his pass?

GUEST:
Yes, and then he asked him to sign an extra piece of paper so you could really match the signatures and you know it's true.

APPRAISER:
Not every soldier's army pass is really worth a great deal of money. But Elvis Presley was not your average soldier. He was stationed in Germany, with the 32nd Armored Division from, I believe, October of 1958 until March of 1960. So you're right here in 1959.

GUEST:
Yes.

APPRAISER:
This also happens to be the year that he met Priscilla in Germany, and I'm so happy that we found it here, because Elvis actually played at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in this building that we're in right now, in June of 1977, just a month before he died. And it would be interesting to look up that date and see if there's any interesting event to know maybe why he was wanting to get a three-day leave. So, the interesting thing when we look at Elvis Presley's signatures...This one, which I believe you said your husband had it signed just to have an extra?

GUEST:
Yes.

APPRAISER:
And it's a really good signature. For an average Elvis signature on a piece of paper like this, this signature would probably sell for about $1,000 to $1,500. Now, when we come to this one, It's a nice signature. He even put the "A" for Aaron. He was very official, Elvis A. Presley, but this one is a completely different animal, because it actually has something to do with his time in the military, which is incredibly rare, because this is an official military document. This would be more of a $3,000 to $5,000 signature.

GUEST:
Mmm.

APPRAISER:
So between the two of them, I think you have about $4,000 to $6,000 worth of autographs sitting here.

GUEST:
Oh, my.

APPRAISER:
On your papers that have been sitting...I don't know where you keep them at home.

GUEST:
In my safety deposit box in the bank.

APPRAISER:
So you do keep them safe.

GUEST:
Yes, I do.

APPRAISER:
I'm very glad you have.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
The Collector's Lab
Los Angeles, CA
Appraised value (2012)
$4,000 Auction$5,500 Auction
Event
Rapid City, SD (July 14, 2012)
Period
20th Century
Form
Autograph
Material
Ink, Paper

Executive producer Marsha Bemko shares her tips for getting the most out of ANTIQUES ROADSHOW.

Value can change: The value of an item is dependent upon many things, including the condition of the object itself, trends in the market for that kind of object, and the location where the item will be sold. These are just some of the reasons why the answer to the question "What's it worth?" is so often "It depends."

Note the date: Take note of the date the appraisal was recorded. This information appears in the upper left corner of the page, with the label "Appraised On." Values change over time according to market forces, so the current value of the item could be higher, lower, or the same as when our expert first appraised it.

Context is key: Listen carefully. Most of our experts will give appraisal values in context. For example, you'll often hear them say what an item is worth "at auction," or "retail," or "for insurance purposes" (replacement value). Retail prices are different from wholesale prices. Often an auctioneer will talk about what she knows best: the auction market. A shop owner will usually talk about what he knows best: the retail price he'd place on the object in his shop. And though there are no hard and fast rules, an object's auction price can often be half its retail value; yet for other objects, an auction price could be higher than retail. As a rule, however, retail and insurance/replacement values are about the same.

Verbal approximations: The values given by the experts on ANTIQUES ROADSHOW are considered "verbal approximations of value." Technically, an "appraisal" is a legal document, generally for insurance purposes, written by a qualified expert and paid for by the owner of the item. An appraisal usually involves an extensive amount of research to establish authenticity, provenance, composition, method of construction, and other important attributes of a particular object.

Opinion of value: As with all appraisals, the verbal approximations of value given at ROADSHOW events are our experts' opinions formed from their knowledge of antiques and collectibles, market trends, and other factors. Although our valuations are based on research and experience, opinions can, and sometimes do, vary among experts.

Appraiser affiliations: Finally, the affiliation of the appraiser may have changed since the appraisal was recorded. To see current contact information for an appraiser in the ROADSHOW Archive, click on the link below the appraiser's picture. Our Appraiser Index also contains a complete list of active ROADSHOW appraisers and their contact details and biographies.