Sunday, August 5, 2012

Elvis Statue to Be Unveiled - Elvis Week 2012 - Tupelo, Mississippi

The statue's sculptor, William N. Beckwith,  was born in Greenville, Mississippi in 1952.
He graduated from The University of Mississippi and is now the
Adjunct Assistant Professor of Sculpture at The University of Mississippi.
He created the Elvis sculpture in his studio in Taylor Mississippi.

On September 26, 1956, a 21-year old Presley returned to Tupelo only a few years after leaving it to perform at the same fair he had performed at as a 10-year old. This time, as part of the Mississippi-Alabama Fair and Dairy Show, Elvis performed two shows. A hundred National Guardsmen controlled the crowd that came out to see the biggest star to come from their hometown.

The statue is based on an iconic image of Elvis singing “Hound Dog,” as women raise their hands up to him with dreams they may brush his hand.   The image was taken that day in September of 1956 by photographer Roger Marshutz and is titled, 'The Hand'.

'The Hand'
Elvis performing in Tupelo Mississippi,
September 26, 1956.  Photo
by Roger Marshutz