Lennon items go on display at Liverpool home
Lennon with Ono in New York in 1980. He was murdered later that year.
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LONDON, England -- Sixty-five years after John Lennon's birth, items from the late Beatle's childhood will go on display at his former Liverpool home.
The exhibition, which includes a copy of Lennon's Sunday School attendance sheet and replicas of his early paintings -- also comes 25 years after he was murdered by a deranged fan in New York.
The items, chosen by Lennon's widow Yoko Ono, will be unveiled Wednesday at the Menlove Avenue home in the English seaport city where he was raised by his Aunt Mimi.
The semi-detached house -- known as Mendips -- was also where Lennon began writing songs with Paul McCartney that became Beatles' classics.
The house is now managed by the National Trust, a charity that oversees heritage sites in England.
"Yoko chose the items very carefully, as she wanted to do something special to mark the year of John's 65th anniversary and the 25th anniversary of his death," said Shelagh Johnston, a Beatles expert who acts as an adviser to Ono.
"She has tried to keep the spirit of the house alive, and to refresh the exhibits so that every few years there is something new for people to enjoy."
Among the replicas of paintings by Lennon as a child is one depicting soccer players and native American Indians -- images he later used on the cover on his 1974 album "Walls And Bridges."
Another is a painting of one of Lennon's teachers, entitled "Mr. Bob."
There is also a replica of his passport from 1960 to 1970, charting The Beatles' history from the early years in Hamburg, Germany, to the rest of Europe, America and later trips to Japan and India.
Copies of Lennon's post-war identity card, swimming proficiency certificate and entrance exam card to Quarry Bank Grammar School will also be on display.
"The items are all from personal family archives, and can now be viewed in their original setting," said Simon Osbourne, the National Trust's properties manager in Liverpool.
"We hope that many people will visit Mendips in this special year, and take the opportunity to see a very personal side of John as a child through this unique collection of memorabilia."
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