Elvis Was Pressured to Marry 'Living Doll' Priscilla Who Was 'Young Enough to Train' Any Way He Wanted
Elvis Presley was dubbed the "King of Rock and Roll" in the 50s and 60s, and Priscilla Presley was only 11 when she found out who he was. While they would later marry and welcome a daughter, Elvis often thought of Priscilla as a "living doll."
Elvis Presley became a hit rock star in 1956 when he exploded like a supernova onto world consciousness. At the time, his future wife was only a pre-teen and had never heard of Elvis at that point. She lived with her family at Bergstrom Air Force Base in Austin, Texas.
One night, her father, Paul Beaulieu, came home late and handed her an album saying he did not understand all the fuss surrounding Elvis. He, however, thought Elvis must have been exceptional as crowds of armed forces had lined up to get his record.
Rock and Roll star Elvis Presley with Priscilla Beaulieu on their wedding day[Left] The couple in May 1967 [Right] | Source: Getty Images
IT WAS LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT FOR BOTH PRISCILLA AND ELVIS
Three years later, a chance presented itself for Priscilla to meet the star, and she was thrilled. On September 13, 1959, during Elvis's Army career, the two met at Elvis's home in Bad Nauheim, Germany, after his friend invited her over. Priscilla and her family had since moved to Germany after her father asked for a transfer.
But getting there had been a hassle. Priscilla's parents did not want her getting involved with the star, and understandably so, since their daughter was only 14 while Elvis was 24. But despite her parent's inhibitions, Priscilla went to the party and, decades later, would recall the thrill of meeting the star for the first time, saying:
"I'll never forget it."
Priscilla Beaulieu plays a record album by teen idol, Elvis Presley's | Source: Getty Images
It was love at first sight for both of them, and after their first meeting, Elvis wanted to see her again. However, her parents were not having any of it and questioned her about it, mainly because she had come home late after that first night at Elvis's. She recalled her father interrogating her, wondering why Elvis wanted to see her again.
They met several more times, and at the end of their third "date," Elvis kissed her goodbye. However, Elvis's friend Rex would later disclose that during that first night at Elvis's home, the singer thought Priscilla looked like an angel, adding:
"And she's young enough that I can train her any way I want."
Elvis Presley before his departure to the U.S military [Left] His girl-friend and future wife Priscilla Beaulieu waving at him [Right] | Source: Getty Images
Priscilla's parents were still reserved about their daughter dating the rock star. They said if she wanted to continue seeing him, they had to meet him. Elvis arrived at the Beaulieu home accompanied by his father and in his Army uniform to try and impress Priscilla's father.
And when Priscilla's dad asked him what his intentions with his daughter were, he said he missed home and just needed someone with whom he could confide. He assured Priscilla's father that he had nothing to worry about, which seemed to put Beaulieu's worries to rest.
THE FUTURE SEEMED BLEAK FOR THE COUPLE AFTER ELVIS LEFT GERMANY FOR THE STATES
Priscilla Beaulieu, 16, writing a letter to her boyfriend, Rock and Roll star Elvis Presley | Source: Getty Images
In 1960, Elvis left Germany for the States. Priscilla sent love letters in pink envelopes, but they all went unanswered. Her parents were confident that Elvis would forget their daughter, and her mother relayed the same sentiments to her saying:
"See, I told you. I told you he was going to forget about you."
They asked her to forget Elvis, go back to school, and do things that young schoolgirls such as herself should be doing. But it was a difficult time for Priscilla. However, things took a pleasant turn when Elvis called 21 days later, saying he wanted Priscilla to visit her in the States.
Rock and Roll star Elvis Presley with Priscilla Beaulieu | Source: Getty Images
The hurdle was convincing Priscilla's parents to let their teenage girl visit him across the globe. Elvis also had to meet some demands for Priscilla's parents to allow her to go. First, he had to wait until Priscilla was on summer vacation.
He also had to send Priscilla a first-class round-trip ticket and send her parents an itinerary of her daily activities for the two weeks she would be in Los Angeles. They also needed her to write to them every day, and after Elvis promised to honor their demands, they agreed to let her go.
Priscilla Beaulieu Presley, with her dog, Honey, at Memphis International airport, Memphis, Tennessee, 11th January 1963. | Source: Getty Images
In 1962, Priscilla visited him in Los Angeles, and then the two took off to Las Vegas together. Once there, Elvis took her to a boutique and bought her beautiful dresses with matching capes, bags, and shoes. He then engaged the hairdresser, who twisted and teased her hair into a long curl that fell in front of her left shoulder.
That, coupled with makeup, transformed Priscilla from an innocent teenager to a sophisticated siren. It is crucial to note that up until this point, despite their steamy lovemaking, they still had not had sex, a pattern that would carry on for the next several years until he finally married her.
They would, however, get intimate with passionate and deep kisses and caresses. During this time, Elvis continued grooming Priscilla, dressing her to appear older than she was. He also asked her to put on more makeup and correct her posture if he found her slumped. She would later write in her book "Elvis and Me:"
Newlyweds Elvis and Priscilla Presley prepare to board their private jet following their wedding at the Aladdin Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. | Source: Getty Images
"I was Elvis's doll, his own living doll to fashion as he pleased."
DESPITE THEIR MUTUAL ATTRACTION, ELVIS FELT PRESSURED TO MARRY PRISCILLA
Priscilla and Elvis's relationship carried on well, and in 1966, just before Christmas, Elvis finally proposed, and the two married on May 1, 1967. And while it seemed like their long wait had finally culminated into something beautiful, the truth of their situation would eventually come to light.
Right before his wedding, Elvis's housekeeper, Alberta, found him crying about the upcoming wedding, and when he asked him why he did not just cancel, Elvis said he did not have a choice.
American rock n' roll singer and actor Elvis Presley holds hands with his bride Priscilla Presley on their wedding day, Las Vegas, Nevada. | Source: Getty Images
It turns out that Elvis's manager Colonel Parker had pressured him into the marriage, a failure to which there would be a potential fallout between them. Others claimed that Priscilla's father had threatened to sue Elvis for living with a minor.
Nevertheless, their wedding was a short eight-minute affair at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas. The ceremony was more of a business transaction and publicity stunt than a romantic affair.
A quick press conference and a breakfast reception followed. Afterward, the newlyweds boarded a private jet and enjoyed a short honeymoon in Palm Springs.
THEIR WEDDING NIGHT WAS A WELCOME END TO PRISCILLA'S 'FRUSTRATING CELIBACY'
Rock and Roll star Elvis Presley with his wife Priscilla Beaulieu on October 9 1973 | Source: Getty Images
After seven years of what Priscilla would later describe as frustrating celibacy, the couple finally consummated their relationship. For the first time, after years of begging him, Elvis finally went all the way and made love to her the way she had always wanted him to. She would write in her 1985 biography "Elvis and Me," as Ew.com reports:
"The desire and lust that had built up in me throughout the years exploded in a frenzy of passion."
She conceived that same night, and nine months later, they welcomed their daughter Lisa Marie. A friend of Elvis's, Nancy Sinatra, shared that Elvis had been thrilled to become a father, but on the flip side, Priscilla also disclosed that he had seemed "petrified" when his baby girl was born.
Rock and roll singer Elvis Presley with his wife Priscilla Beaulieu Presley and their 4 day old daughter Lisa Marie Presley on February 5, 1968 in Memphis, Tennessee. | Source: Getty Images
At first, Elvis was a devoted family man, but gradually, his attraction to his wife faded, and they would go months without making love. Eventually, the passion fizzled, and their sex life became almost non-existent. She recalled how difficult it had been living with Elvis:
"Women gravitated to him, so I would be nervous when he had to go places alone. I would even go with him to get his teeth cleaned! I always had an eye on him because everyone in the world was after him."
Her dedication to her husband continued long after his attraction to her was gone. His happiness was paramount, and she would confess: "My life was his life. My problems were secondary."
Rock and Roll star Elvis Presley with his wife Priscilla Beaulieu and daughter Lisa Marie in 1970 | Source: Getty Images
Their marriage continued nosediving, and Elvis resorted to pills and touring. And in 1972, Priscilla had had it and told Elvis that she would be divorcing him. Unlike many other divorces, theirs was amicable, and they left the courthouse holding hands. They continued to be close and called each other all the time because, as Priscilla would say:
"I did not divorce him because I didn't love him. He was the love of my life, but I had to find out about the world."
ELVIS'S AFFAIR AND HIS UNEXPECTED DEATH
Following their divorce, Priscilla seemed to thrive as a single woman, while, on the other hand, Elvis's life appeared to head downhill. He began dating Miss Tennessee model Linda Thompson soon after, a relationship that lasted four years.
Elvis Presley with girlfriend Linda Thompson at the Hilton Hotel in Cincinnati, Ohio on March 21 1976 | Source: Getty Images
Unfortunately, on August 16, 1977, the unbelievable news hit the headlines that "the King" had passed on. Initially, the authorities ruled that his death resulted from a heart attack. Still, toxicology reports would later reveal that the star had high levels of several pharmaceutical drugs in his system.
When Priscilla learned of his death, she also wanted to die. She says she locked herself in the bedroom after leaving instructions that she did not want to speak to anyone. They had remained highly close after their divorce, and his death had left her feeling "afraid and alone."
LIFE FOR PRISCILLA AND LISA MARIE AFTER ELVIS'S DEMISE
After his untimely death at 42, Priscilla undertook several projects, including appearing in the primetime show "Dallas" and the "Naked Gun" film franchise. In September 2021, Priscilla and Kruse GWS Auctions started auctioning some of Elvis's memorabilia, including his eyelet jumpsuit.
Actress Priscilla Presley and daughter Singer Lisa Marie Presley at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino on April 23, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada | Source: Getty Images
Lisa Marie followed in her father's footsteps and became a singer. Today, many recognize her due to her first album going platinum. She has several others to her name, including "Storm & Grace," "Now What," and "To Whom It May Concern." She is also a mother of four and a savvy businesswoman.