An exhibition of historic Bibles will reveal how the death of Elvis Presley’s mum left him “all shook up”. Historic holy books from across the world are being put on display in Southport to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the King James version. The collection, which is usually housed in London’s Museum Of The Book, includes Bible’s belonging to the Queen, actor Charlton Heston and Crimean War nurse Florence Nightingale.
But it is the book inscribed by Elvis himself which will cause a stir at the event, organised by methodist chapels. The singer, whose mother Gladys died of heart failure soon after he purchased the book, wrote on the inside back cover in blue pen: “I love ya, Mama.”
Curator David Smith, a Baptist minister, said: “Elvis grew up in church and started his music in church. That was where he first performed. “But this Bible does not appear to have been read. Besides the inscription I do not think it was touched. “There is no sign of any annotation. It was a sentimental Bible to him – it was a very sweet, affectionate message to his mother, whom he missed dearly.”
Southport’s Wayfarers Shopping Arcade hosts the exclusive exhibition from tomorrow to July 6, with late night opening on July 5.