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Did You Know Elvis Was a Rancher and Cattleman?

Photo courtesy of Circle G Ranch/Facebook

Most folks know the legacy of the Mississippi boy who grew up to be a family man, military veteran, devout Christian, kind-hearted giver, and of course, the musical legend known as the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.

But did you know, Elvis had a horse and cattle ranch in Horn Lake?

It was the place where he and his wife, Pricilla, honeymooned after their Las Vegas wedding in the 1960s and spent the first two years of their marriage at the serene ranch.

Although his other home, Graceland, is far more well-known, from February 1967 until December 1969, Elvis spent weekends relaxing at the Circle G Ranch located at the corner of Goodman Road and Highway 301 in Horn Lake.

This mysterious and rarely explored ranch is only ten miles from Graceland, but Elvis used the Circle G or “Elvis Ranch” as a sanctuary to get away from the pressures of being constantly in the spotlight, where he could enjoy the outdoors and spend time with friends and family.

The expansive 231-acre property is bound to catch anyone’s eye, and that’s exactly what happened in 1967 when Elvis spotted the ranch driving back from a late-night horse-buying excursion with Priscilla, Jerry Schilling and his girlfriend, Sandy, and Alan Fortas. When he noticed a 55-foot illuminated cross overlooking a 14-acre lake, he knew he had to buy it.

Photo courtesy of Circle G Ranch/Facebook

He instructed Fortas to pull over and knock on the door of the small red brick cottage and make the owner an offer to buy the place, which was then known as Twinkletown Farm. Elvis acquired the house, cattle, farm equipment, and 150 acres of rolling pasture for $437,000, using Graceland as collateral.

In September 2021, a historical marker was erected at the site to commemorate Elvis’s time at the Circle G. The sign was paid for by the Circle G Foundation, a non-profit organization made up of devoted Elvis fans from around the world, and is the first Mississippi state historical marker ever sponsored internationally.

“It’s a beautiful marker, really a long time coming,” said Elvis’ cousin, Donna Presley. “Elvis and the Circle G is definitely a part of the history of Horn Lake. It was a place that he loved.”

She said Elvis was very laid back and loved staying at the ranch, where he was surrounded by family and close friends. He bought eight trailers where his Memphis entourage stayed and spent peaceful days and nights riding horses, target shooting, frog hunting, and indulging in other fun.

Over the years, the property has been used as a cattle ranch, a Mexican restaurant, a shooting club, and a flower shop inside the honeymoon cottage. It was purchased in 2012 by a group of investors who have said they plan to restore the buildings and grounds.

Presley said she would love to see the Circle G restored to its former glory for the public to enjoy and see another side of Elvis, “because Elvis liked to have fun and enjoy life. And he wanted everyone to enjoy life along with him.”

The King’s time at the ranch came to an end in 1972, when he sold it. And though the Presley family hasn’t owned the property for decades, Elvis’ presence can still be found there—the legend goes, he lost his wedding band on the ranch and it has never been recovered.

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