Guitar Played by John Lennon on Beatles Classics Hits Auction Block After Being Found in an Attic After 50 Years

The instrument is expected to set a new world record for highest-selling Beatles guitar

<p>Bettmann/Getty</p> John Lennon in Portland, Oregon on 1965


John Lennon in Portland, Oregon on 1965

After 50 years, a long-lost guitar played by John Lennon on seminal Beatles hits has been discovered in an attic — and is now up for grabs.

Julien’s Auctions announced Tuesday, April 23 that Lennon’s Framus 12-string Hootenanny acoustic guitar, which he played on classics like “Help!,” “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away,” “It’s Only Love,” “I’ve Just Seen a Face” and “Norwegian Wood,” will be up for auction during a two-day event in New York City next month.

A release dubbed the instrument the “most important Beatles guitar to ever come to market,” and noted that it’s expected to go for more than $800,000, and will likely set a new world record for highest-selling Beatles guitar.

“The discovery of John Lennon’s Help! guitar that was believed to be lost is considered the greatest find of a Beatles guitar since Paul McCartney’s lost 1961 Höfner bass guitar,” Darren Julien, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Julien’s Auctions, said in a statement. “Finding this remarkable instrument is like finding a lost Rembrandt or Picasso, and it still looks and plays like a dream after having been preserved in an attic for more than 50 years. To awaken this sleeping beauty is a sacred honor and is a great moment for Music, Julien’s, Beatles and Auction history.”

Related: Paul McCartney's Stolen Bass Guitar Has Been Returned 50 Years Later After Beatles Fans Organized a Search

The guitar was famously played by Lennon in the movie Help! in the scene where the Beatles perform “You've Got to Hide Your Love Away” and more.

Its location became unknown in the later half of the 1960s after it made its way to Gordon Waller of the British duo Peter and Gordon, and he later gave it to his road managers.

“It was recently discovered in an attic in the rural British countryside where it had lain forgotten and unplayed for over 50 years,” the release said. “The homeowners found the guitar in the midst of their move and contacted Julien’s Auctions.”

While at the house, executives from Julien’s also found the guitar’s original case in the trash and rescued it. The Maton case was made in Australia and can be seen in photos of the Beatles taken in 1965.

<p>David Redfern/Redferns</p> John Lennon in 1963 (playing a 1958 Rickenbacker 325 guitar — not the one being put up for auction).

David Redfern/Redferns

John Lennon in 1963 (playing a 1958 Rickenbacker 325 guitar — not the one being put up for auction).

The instrument will headline the Music Icons two-day auction event on May 29 and 30 at the Hard Rock Café in New York City and online at The auction house has previously broken records with Beatles memorabilia sales, including another acoustic guitar of Lennon’s that sold for a record $2.4 million.

Other things up for sale at the event include a Gianni Versace dress worn by Tina Turner on her Wildest Dreams Tour, which is expected to fetch between $4,000 and $6,000, and a handwritten Nirvana set list written by Kurt Cobain, which is expected to get up to $8,000.

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The discovery of the late Lennon’s guitar comes months after his bandmate Paul McCartney announced that his 1961 Höfner electric bass guitar had been found and returned to him more than 50 years after it was stolen.

The rocker’s instrument had been taken from a van in London in 1972, and was found with its original case after fans launched The Lost Bass Project in an effort to track it down. The fans discovered that the thief had sold the bass — which can be heard on songs like “Love Me Do” and “She Loves You” — to the owner of the Admiral Blake pub in London.

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