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The Beatles 50 Years Ago Today: May 26, 1969

Beatles star John Lennon and his newlywed wife, Yoko Ono, spent a famous week in bed at Montreal’s Queen Elizabeth Hotel to promote peace, love and pyjama power.

The couple welcomed scores of friends, fans, fellow musicians, reporters, photographers and others into suite 1742 during their seven-day retreat, which took place two months after their honeymoon bed-in at the Amsterdam Hilton.

The highlight of their bed-in was the composition and recording of Lennon’s antiwar anthem Give Peace a Chance. A piece of paper bearing the hand-written lyrics to the song, given by Lennon to star-struck Montreal teenager Gail Renard after the recording session, was sold for $800,000 at a Christie’s auction in 2008. In 2009, another Lennon placard that had adorned the hotel room — this one with the hand-written message “L’Amour et la Paix” (Love and Peace) — sold for $140,000 at a Christie’s sale in London.

 

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