Elvis Presley Timeline: 1955

A historical Elvis Presley timeline of dates and important events

Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Here's a handy database of dates and events in Elvis Presley's life during 1955. You can also find out what else Elvis was up to in 1955 and in all the years of his life.

January 1: Elvis signs with new manager Bob Neal.
January 6: Waylon Jennings, future Buddy Holly bassist and "outlaw" Country star, meets Elvis for the first time at a show in Lubbock, TX.
January 11: "Colonel" Tom Parker first takes notice of Presley's name after Texarkana, AK, DJ "Uncle Dudley" reports on the crowd frenzy at tonight's show.


January 15: "Colonel" Tom Parker travels to Shreveport, LA, to witness Elvis in concert.
February 6: Bob Neal, Tom Parker and Sam Phillips meet in Memphis to discuss Elvis; Parker angers Phillips by revealing that he is already approaching major labels about the singer.
February 13: As part of the C&W duo Buddy And Bob, Buddy Holly appears on the bill with Elvis in Lubbock, TX.
February 16: Roy Orbison witnesses Elvis' act in Odessa, TX.
March 23: Elvis, Scotty, and Bill audition for Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts show in New York and are rejected.
May 6: Elvis returns to Memphis to take his girlfriend, Dixie Locke, to her Junior prom.
May 13: At tonight's show in Jacksonville, FL, Elvis tells the girls who make up the majority of the 14,000-plus crowd that he'll "see [them] backstage." The crowd proceeds to do just that, causing a riot and, reportedly, convincing Tom Parker about Elvis' popularity once and for all.


June 3: Future country-pop star Mac Davis also catches Elvis' show in Lubbock.
June 5: Gladys Presley, Elvis' mother, awakens suddenly in Memphis, convinced that her boy is in danger; at that moment, Elvis' first pink Cadillac catches on fire while en route from Fulton, AR. Elvis is unharmed.
June 17: Bob Neal agrees to let Tom Parker handle all Elvis' bookings.


July 7: Elvis finally finds a new pink Cadillac.
July 22: RCA offers $12,000 for Elvis' contract.
July 26: Elvis meets what would be his first "public" girlfriend, June Juanico, at a concert in Biloxi. The pair "took in some floor shows" and talked in Elvis' car, outside June's house, until 6 am.
July 31: Photographer William S. Randolph takes the famous concert shot that will eventually become the cover of the debut Elvis Presley album.
August 1: Elvis returns to Tupelo, MS, his birthplace, for the first time in a decade, to perform before a crowd of 3,000. His previous performance had been at the age of ten, when he won Fifth Prize at a fair for his rendition of "Old Shep."
August 6: At today's show in Batesville, AR, Presley and the band are a little too loose, cracking risque jokes and leaving the stage after only four songs. The promoter demands to be compensated, leaving the Colonel furious; Parker immediately fires off a letter to Bob Neal about professionalism.
September 6: So many Elvis fans crowd into the high school gym in Bono, AR, that the floor collapses under their weight. Fortunately, there are no injuries.
September 8:: After Bob Neal complains that Elvis isn't being paid enough for some performances, the Colonel sends back a telegram informing Neal that Parker is prepared to drop Presley immediately if he's not allowed to handle him his way.


September 17:: The tension between the two having finally reached a head, Neal pulls out of Presley's contract, giving the Colonel full control of Elvis.
September 23:: Elvis attends another All-Night Gospel Sing at Ellis Auditorium; when James Blackwood, head of Elvis' heroes the Blackwood Brothers, finds that Presley has paid full price for a ticket, he makes sure the singer is immediately paid back.
September 24:: For tonight's Louisiana Hayride appearance, Elvis Presley is for the first time in his life given top billing.
September 30:: James Dean, icon of Fifties youth, dies in a car accident. Upon hearing the news in his Gladewater, TX, hotel room while on tour, Elvis Presley breaks down and cries.
October 20:: Accidentally breaking two strings on his guitar at tonight's show in Cleveland, Elvis smashes the guitar on the floor, causing the crowd to erupt.

The singer is led out by police escort.
November 10:: Songwriter Mae Axton (mother of Hoyt) visits the King in his Nashville hotel room and plays him a demo of a song RCA wishes him to record called "Heartbreak Hotel."
November 14:: Col. Parker speaks with the William Morris Agency about possibly getting his client a role in an upcoming Hollywood movie.
November 21:: At the Sun Studios, with several of his business associates and family members looking on, Elvis signs with RCA; his deal holds him to four singles a year, a 5% royalty, and $5,000.

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Your Citation
Fontenot, Robert. "Elvis Presley Timeline: 1955." ThoughtCo, Apr. 10, 2016, thoughtco.com/elvis-presley-timeline-1955-2522541. Fontenot, Robert. (2016, April 10). Elvis Presley Timeline: 1955. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/elvis-presley-timeline-1955-2522541 Fontenot, Robert. "Elvis Presley Timeline: 1955." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/elvis-presley-timeline-1955-2522541 (accessed November 22, 2017).