The album that John Lennon signed for his killer Mark David Chapman prior to his murder has gone up for auction. It’s a copy of Lennon and Yoko Ono’s Double Fantasy, and the bidding is starting at $400,000.
Beyond its significant monetary value, the record is an iconic artifact from one of the most significant tragedies in rock and roll history. On the morning of December 8th, 1980, Chapman approached the ex-Beatles member outside of his New York apartment as an ordinary fan and asked him to sign the newly released Double Fantasy. After signing, Lennon and Ono trekked off for a day at the studio, but when they returned five hours later, Chapman shot Lennon dead.
According to the listing, Chapman had placed the record in a planter next to the Dakota, and it was later discovered by someone who turned it in to the police, then stored it under his bed for 18 years upon return. The album was first sold in 1999 for $150,000 and changed hands in 2003 and 2010 when it went for $850,000. The LP went back on sale in 2017 with an asking price of $1.5 million.
Chapman is currently serving a life sentence at the Wende Correctional Facility in Alden, N.Y. Earlier this year, he was denied parole for the 11th time. He will be eligible again in 2022.