A Nearby Must-See For Beatles Fans [PHOTOS]
If you’re fascinated by the storied career of The Beatles like I am, then I have a must see for you. This weekend I made the short trip to Davenport to visit the Putnam Museum and take in their display called ‘The Magical History Tour’. You will be fascinated by all that you will find in this exhibit.
As you go through the early years, the exhibit starts out a little slow. It shows a lot of photos, and merchandising that were used to fuel Beatlemania. The one “Ah ha!” moment in the first section is the drum kit for The Quarry Men, the original name for the group. Things really begin to get good when you see an exact replica of The Cavern Club, the club in Liverpool where the group really honed their sound. Also nearby you will find a copy of Manager Brian Epstein’s business card with all their signatures on the back including Pete Best. It is said to be one of only two known in existence.
Things really gets moving in the second section where you get to learn more about the recording techniques used by George Martin and the group. Clearly, they were way ahead of their time. The final section is where I stood in awe. The first thing that held my attention for several minutes was the original letter that officially broke up the band. Signed by John, George and Ringo to Paul’s father-in-law, who was managing them loosely at the time. It is an amazing piece of history to look at. In one sheet of paper, maybe the greatest band of all time ended it all.
But, that is nothing compared to one single album that sits off by itself in its own section. This truly made that hair on the back of my neck stand up. There in a glass case is the last autograph John Lennon ever gave. His name scrawled across the cover of Double Fantasy.
What makes it so unique and causes you to stop in your tracks is that it’s the album John signed for Mark David Chapman, hours before Chapman returned and murdered him. In addition to Lennon’s signature, just above it is written WJT-2, which I assume to be an evidence number that was used in Chapman’s murder case. If you are like me, you will find yourself just staring at it.
On the way out, in the lobby they have a banner of Abbey Road where you can take a picture of yourself walking across that famous crosswalk. There is so much more to see, but that’s my quick take and what stood out for me. The exhibit is open through June 4 and the cost is just $18 a person (and worth it). You can visit Putnam.org for more details and hours.