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Date of Birth: 
October 9, 1940

Place of Birth: 
Liverpool, England

December 8, 1980
New York City

John Lennon Day Petition

John Lennon Links

Links For The Beatles


John Lennon
Video Page


Working Class Hero


BBC News
John Lennon
Shot Dead
by Peter Hobday

John Lennon
Video Clips


John Lennon
Audio Page

CBS News
Former Beatle
John Lennon Shot
And Killed
by John Bohannon
and Stephanie Shelton

John Lennon Assassination

John Lennon
Interviews And Spoken Words Recordings

The Murder Of
John Lennon


John Lennon
Photographs Page

Photographs of
John and Yoko
by Allan Tannenbaum

John Lennon and
Yoko Ono Photographs
by Bob Gruen

Photographs of
John Lennon,
Yoko Ono, and Sean
by Sanford Kreger

Lennon Collection
by David Spindel

Photo Gallery

News and Articles


1957- 1970
The Beatles
Bio and Discography


Unfinished Music, No. 1: Two Virgins

Life with the Lions: Unfinished Music #2

Wedding Album

Live Peace in Toronto

John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band


Sometime in
New York City

Mind Games

Walls and Bridges

Rock 'n' Roll

Shaved Fish

Double Fantasy

John Lennon Box Set

John Lennon Collection

Milk & Honey

Live in New York City

Menlove Ave.

Imagine: John Lennon
[Original Soundtrack]


Lennon Legend:
The Very Best of
John Lennon



Legend Box


The Legends Collection

Milk and Honey
[Bonus Tracks]

John Lennon Links

The Beatles News


John Winston Lennon

Family History and Early Years

Fred Lennon

John's father Fred Lennon grew up without any parents. Fred never knew his mother and his father Jack Lennon died in 1921 when Fred was only nine years old. Jack Lennon was born in Dublin but lived for a long period in America as a professional singer in Kentucky Minstrels. Jack Lennon went back to England in 1910 and got soon after married and started a family in Liverpool. Their first and only child Fred Lennon, was born in 1912 and his mother died shortly after. In 1921 when his father died he was put in the orphanage Liverpool Bluecoat School. By the age of 15 Fred left the orphanage with two new suits and, according to Fred, a good education. Fred's first job was as an office clerk.

Julia Elizabeth Stanley

John's mother Julia Elizabeth Stanley was born 12 March 1914 just five months before First World War. Liverpool was then a big and growing city with a huge harbor. Julia Stanley was child number four out of five children of George Ernest Stanley and Annie Millward. George Stanley who also was called POP was born in 1874. He started his career at sea but settled later down in Liverpool to be an insurance inspector. He married Annie Millward around 1904. Their first two children died before they reached three years. In 1906 Mary Elizabeth Stanley (called Mimi) was born who later became like a mother for John Lennon. Elizabeth Stanley was born in 1910, Anne Georgia Stanley was born in 1912 and finally Harriet Stanley who was born in 1916.

Mimi Stanley got married with George Smith but they never had any children of their own.

Fred Lennon and Julia Stanley

The first time Fred Lennon ever met Julia Stanley was only one week after had left the orphanage. The meeting took place in Sefton Park. Fred was sitting on a bench with a friend who was showing him how to pick up girls. Fred had bought himself a cigarette holder and a bowler hat to impress the girls. They had their eyes on a little girl and as they walked past her she said "You look silly" and Fred answered "You look lovely." The girl was Julia Stanley.

After Fred had been working in an office for some time he left the job to become a bell boy on one of the many ships that sailed from and to Liverpool. It didn't take long before he was promoted to cook. Every time he was ashore during approximately ten years he would date Julia. One day Julia proposed to Fred. In Hunter Davies book Fred tells: 'Me and Julia used to play and sing together. We'd have been the tops today. One day she said to me, "Let's go and get married." I said we had to put the banns up and do it properly. She said, "I bet you won't." So I did, just for a joke. It was all a big laugh, getting married.'

The Stanley family didn't think it was any fun at all though. Everybody agreed that Fred was a good-looking man but they also thought that he was no good for Julia. The wedding took place on Mount Pleasant Register Office on 3 December 1938. They had planned to meet outside the Adelphi Hotel at ten o'clock. When Fred arrived there, Julia was not in sight. After he had been waiting for a while he called Trocadero cinema, where Julia usually spent most of her time. Nobody there had seen anything to Julia. Just when Fred was about to give up waiting for her, she finally came. No family was present during the wedding and after a short honeymoon at the Trocadero cinema Fred left for a three-month trip to West India.

John Winston Lennon

Julia Lennon lived at home in the next two years and when Fred Lennon was ashore he also lived there. During the summer of 1940 Julia discovered that she was pregnant. Liverpool was being bombed heavily by the Germans and nobody knew where in the world Fred was. On the 9 October 1940 Julia was brought to Maternity Hospital in Oxfortstreet where she had John Winston Lennon at 6:30. It was Julia's sister Mimi Smith who gave him the name John Winston. The Winston part was inspired by Winston Churchill.

Every month for the last two years Julia had collected some of Fred's salary at the shipping office. Eighteen months after she gave birth to John Lennon, she was told that Fred no longer worked for the company he used to. Nobody knew where he was and therefor she could get no money. It wasn't until many years later that they heard anything from him. One year later (when it was possible for Julia without Fred being home) Julia and Fred got separated. Fred's story about what happened is like this. He was in New York when USA got into the Second World War. He was therefor told that he would be transferred to a Liberty Boat. This was OK for Fred but when he found out that he would loose his rank he refused. Fred demanded to be a waiter at Queen Mary and was therefor arrested and sent to North Africa. When he arrived, he was sent to jail for three months. According to Fred he had been sending lovely letters to Julia but she never received any.

After the separation Julia continued to live at home but had a rather wild nightlife. In 1944 two years after her separation she met a young military man with whom she fell in love. Shortly after they separated and once again she was pregnant. The child, who was a girl, was after George Stanleys advice adopted shortly after the birth on 19 June 1945. Nobody knows today where this child grew up other than it was somewhere in Norway. After the adoption Julia got a job at a cafe on Penny Lane. It was here that Julia in 1945 met John Dykins. They fell in love and moved in together in a small apartment in Gateacre, Liverpool. The Stanley family was also against this relationship.

Julia Lennon, Fred Lennon or Mimi Smith

Mimi Smith didn't think that Julia was capable to raise a child and went to Julia to tell her that she wanted to have John to come and live with her but Julia didn't want to let go of him. Then Mimi got hold of a social adviser, together they went home to Julia. Because the apartment was so small that John couldn't have his own room, Julia was told that she either should get a bigger apartment or let John live with Mimi and George. Julia and John Dykins could not afford a bigger apartment so John moved in with Mimi.

Not long after John had moved in with Mimi and George Smith John's father Fred Lennon called and said that he wanted to have John with him on a vacation to Blackpool. What he didn't tell was that his real plans were to immigrate to New Zealand with John. Mimi could not refuse that he wanted to spend a weekend with his son so she let him go. But as soon as John's mother Julia Lennon heard that Fred had picked up John she knew that something was wrong. She rushed down to Blackpool found Fred and demanded that she got John back. Fred then asked John with whom he wanted to stay. At first he chose Fred but just as Julia was about to walk a way he ran over to her. Julia did however not keep John but send him back to Mimi. This was the last time until 1968 when John had been famous for six years that Fred spoke to John.

John Lennon and Mimi Smith

The upbringing that Mimi Stanley gave John was strict and firm. Mimi never used violence, which she thought was a weakness, but would rather shout at or ignore him. John hated to be ignored and would do anything to avoid coming into that situation.

Mimi thought that children should not have too much fun so the only time she went out with John was in December when they went to watch a Walt Disney film. And in the summer when they went to Strawberry Fields for the annual garden party at the Army Children. If John wanted anything besides from these two events he had to go to his Uncle George Stanley. Until he aged 14 he would get 5 shillings a week but he could earn some more if he worked for Mimi in the house or for George in the garden.

Mimi did all she could not let John and his mother meet each other. She thought it was best for him not to be confused by the rather strange settings he growing up in. She therefore arranged it in such a way that John's mother Julia Stanley would visit while John was at school or out with his uncle. But John had an idea about what was going on. He could remember some of the time he spent with his mother and the few times Julia would visit while John was at home he would be sent to his room.

Already from a early age John loved singing and spent much of his time listening to the radio. He had problems memorizing the words of the songs that he heard but would instead make up his own something he continued to do until he met Paul McCartney. His favorite songs when he was little were "Wee Willy Winkie" and "Let Him Go, Let Him Carry".

When John later looked back on his life he found his years with Mimi and George, as some of the best years of his life despite of Mimi's rather untraditional child upbringing.

John Lennon at Dovedale Primary

The first school John ever went to was Dovedale Primary. It was the same school that George Harrison some years later also attended. After just five months he had with a little help from his uncle George Smith learned to read and write. He soon began to write small stories. It evolved to small books. A series of books was called "Sport, Speed and Illustrated. Edited and Illustrated by J. W. Lennon." They each ended with "If you liked this one, come again next week it'll be even better." He would also write a lot of crazy poems. When they got too personal he would write them in handwriting that only he could read. He would later write two books, which was a development of these early poems. His own favorite book was Alice In Wonderland.

The first days John went to Dovedale Primary Mimi Smith insisted to follow him to school but it didn't take long before John insisted to go alone. For a long time she would spy on him when he went to school. She was very protective and didn't want him to play with common boys. One day when Mimi was walking down the street she saw a group of boys gathered around a fight. Mimi thought "Just like those common scruffs." As the fight ended, she saw that one of the fighting boys was John. Mimi didn't like the character that John got in school. He always wanted to be the boss, had his own gang and was always involved in fights.

In Hunter Davies book John tells:

'The sort of gang I led went in for things like shoplifting and pulling girls' knickers down. When the bomb fell and everyone got caught, I was always the one they missed. I was scared at the time but Mimi was always the only parent who never found out.'

Although he was fighting a lot he always knew when he had a chance to win or when he had to use other means. When he thought that a competitor was too big he used psychological means instead. Through all of his life John had a way with words which could hurt any opponent much more that he could with his fists. It was seldom easy for people to get John against them. For most people the only thing to do was either not to confront him or just to turn the other cheek.

Ivan Vaughan and Pete Shotton were full-time members of John's gang and his best friends. Pete and Ivan were also the only friends that Mimi accepted and wanted in her house.

While he went at Dovedale Primary he also went to Sunday school and continued until he became a teenager. He was confirmed when he was 15. He also for a brief period of time sang in the church choir of St. Peter in Woolton, Liverpool.

The reunion of John and Julia Lennon - The first guitar

Julia's uncertified marriage with John Dykins continued happily while John was living with Mimi and in 1946 Julia was again pregnant. Because of the limited space in their apartment they moved back in with Julia's father who now lived alone. The child was born on March 5th 1947. It was a girl and she was named Julia Dykins after her mother. Julia's farther George Stanley died just when she was pregnant with her fourth child (the second with John Dykins) in 1949. John Dykins and Julia could not afford to continue to live in the big house and it had to be sold. They then moved into the somewhat smaller house in Springwood Estate, Liverpool very close to Mimi and George Smith's house where John lived. Julia's fourth child was born on October 26th 1949 it was a girl and she was named Jacqui Dykins.

Meanwhile John found out that Julia was his real mother and where she lived. Without Mimi knowing of it John began re-establishing his relationship with his mother. He saw here not like a mother but rather like a really good friend. When Mimi found out that John spent most of his spare time at Julia's house she didn't like it but now when John was almost 10 years old she didn't feel it was right to interfere. The relationship between John and Julia was perfect. Julia was very young at heart and had much the same sense of humor as John. Julia was also very fond of music. John's father Fred Lennon had taught her to play the banjo and now she taught John. The first song John learned on the banjo was Buddy Holly's That'll Be The Day. Julia was a perfectionist and didn't stop until he had learned all chords and would help him write the correct words down.

After some time it was not only John that enjoyed to be together with Julia. Soon after also John's best friends Pete Shotton and Ivan Vaughan spend most of their time with his mother.

It didn't take long before John wanted a guitar. Because Julia wouldn't interfere too much in the life that Mimi wanted John to lead she wouldn't give him a guitar but encouraged him to ask Mimi to get him one. John knew if there should be any chance that she would give him one he would have to go to his Uncle George first. George had for many years ago given him a cheap mouth organ. On a bus trip to Scotland he drove everybody mad with it but the bus driver told him that he could hear he had talent and said that if he would come to the bus terminal the next day then he would give him a brand new one. John was at the bus terminal early the next morning and collected his brand new mouth organ. John played mouth organ regularly for many years and also on some of the first The Beatles recordings.

It didn't take John long to convince George that he needed a guitar and in the end Mimi and John went out to buy a used guitar.

John Lennon at Quarry Bank High School 1952-1957

John started in September 1952 in Quarry Bank High School. The school was founded in 1922 and was rated just as highly as The Liverpool Institute where Paul McCartney and George Harrison started a few years later. Of John's best friends from Dovendale Primary Pete Shotton and Ivan Vaughan only Pete started on Quarry Bank High School. Ivan went to Liverpool Institute. It wasn't because his parents thought it was a better school that Quarry Bank but because they wanted him to get as far away from John as possible so he could concentrate more on his studies. At Liverpool Institute Ivan met Paul McCartney and later introduced him to John.

John was not at all glad that he had to go to high school. He had just fought his way to the top on Dovendale Primary and now he was the little one once again. It didn't however take him long to become the leader of a new little gang. It didn't take him long to get in trouble with the teachers either and soon after he was well known at the office of the headmaster.

Though Pete and John were best friends, they was not completely alike. Pete was good at mathematics, which John hated and John was good in art class. John didn't like that Pete was better than him and tried to ruin it for him by sending obscene drawings to him in the class room which would make Pete laugh and get him sent to the headmaster.

At home John tried to conceal how things were going. He went from home in the clothing that Mimi wanted him to wear but he always changed a few blocks away. When John first fell down on B-level and then down on C-level, Mimi knew that something wasn't right. John himself was happy with B-level because the he wasn't a mummy's boy but he didn't like to be called stupid either.

While his grades became worse and worse Mimi became harder on him. When Mimi was really angry with him John could always find comfort at his Uncle George or his mother Julia. Although George wasn't his father he looked upon him as one. It therefore came as a big shock for John when George Stanley suddenly died on June 5, 1955 following a liver disease.

During John's fifth and last year at Quarry Bank High School, John got a new head master Mr. Pobjoy. Mr. Pobjoy quickly saw how big a troublemaker John was but he could also (as the only one) see what John was good at. He therefore decided to do all he could to get him into Liverpool Art College after high school but when he flunked all his O-levels John could get directly into art college. It was only because Mr. Pobjoy made a special recommendation after he had talked to Mimi that he was accepted.

It was also during John's years at Quarry Bank High School that he formed his first band The Quarry Men.

Who Authorized The Assassination Of John Lennon?
by Mark R. Elsis

John Lennon Biography

December 8, 1980

The Life Of John Lennon

Another John Lennon Biography

John Lennon CDs

John Lennon DVDs

More John Lennon DVDs

John Lennon Books


The Greatest Song Ever Written

Imagine (Video)

Imagine (Audio)


Imagine there's no heaven, it's easy if you try,
No hell below us, above us only sky,
Imagine all the people, living for today.
Imagine there's no countries, it isn't hard to do,
Nothing to kill or die for, and no religion too,
Imagine all the people, living life in peace.
You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one,
I hope someday you'll join us, and the world will be as one.

Imagine no possessions, I wonder if you can,
No need for greed or hunger, a brotherhood of man,
Imagine all the people, sharing all the world.
You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one,
I hope someday you'll join us, and the world will live as one. |