Several years following the Wall Street Crash of 1929, the United States was at the bleakest point of the Great Depression. Roughly 25% of the nation’s workforce found themselves employed, and those lucky enough to have steady employment saw a massive salary cut.
Things were just about the same for the professionals in the upper-middle class, such as lawyers and doctors, whose income took a sudden dive to around 40% down.
American families with financial security had an abrupt change to economic instability or bankruptcy.
Households had no choice but to adapt to the new grim reality quickly. The average American had no job, money, clothes, cars, or home.
One of those Americans was the 18-year-old Vernon, whose wife Gladys was about to give birth to a child they later named Elvis.
All the future fame and wealth Elvis earned might have an impression that the family never struggled in life, but his father’s younger years were full of hardships and challenging circumstances.
In May 1938, he was convicted of forgery in Mississippi and had to serve a few years in state prison.
10 /10 A Humble Laborer
Vernon was born in 1916 in Fulton, Mississippi. He would be in his early 20s during the worst times of The Great Depression.
His son from his first marriage with Gladys Smith was born a few years before. In 1948, the family moved to Memphis with nearly their entire belongings crammed into a Dodge.
As their son grew older and became an international sensation, their circumstances took a giant leap of improvement, allowing them to live like royalties in Graceland, a mansion forever known as the home of Elvis A. Presley.
9 /10 Graceland
In 1957 following Elvis’ commercial breakout, he gave his parents a budget of $100,000 to purchase a property. Elvis wanted a farmhouse-like home with some elbow room all around it.
They found a house matching the description, located just a few miles south of downtown Memphis. Back then, there wasn’t any large-scale housing project in the area.
Elvis bought the house and nearly 14 acres surrounding the mansion for slightly more than $102,500.
His parents, Vernon and Gladys, lived with him in Graceland, and Vernon also managed his son’s businesses.