The only known factory-sealed copy of the fabled White Album numbered A0000001 is up for auction by Guernsey’s on Invaluable. Quite possibly the rarest Beatles album in existence, this copy is believed to be one of only three Number One “White Album” covers that were made at the Queens Litho company which supplied the covers for Capitol/Apple Records during the production of this album.
The “White Album” was the Beatles last album released on Capitol Records and the first Beatles album for Apple Records. A double album, it was released on November 25, 1968. First issue covers had the title “The BEATLES” in raised letters, the covers were numbered and the discs had an Apple label with a Capitol Records logo in white around the perimeter. Later issues were not numbered and the discs also lacked the Capitol Records logo. Each album was issued with two discs, a large poster and four glossy photos: one of each Beatle. First issues also included a colour protective sheet.
This copy is believed to be one of only three Number One “White Album” covers that were made at the Queens Litho company which supplied the covers for Capitol/Apple Records during the production of this album. It was owned from new by a Queens Litho employee who had worked on the project. In 1998, on behalf of that employee, the respected Beatles authority Perry Cox sold this particular copy to its current owner. In Mr. Cox’s Letter of Authenticity, he describes in detail how this album was one of the three created at the time, and believes it to be the only one that was factory sealed. The other two were believed to never have been sealed. Additionally, there is a “Letter of Appraisal” by accomplished Beatles collector and dealer Steve Green. (The current owner, who has been in possession of this album since 1998, is recognized as an advanced collector, an expert on Beatles vinyl and is the author of published literature pertaining to these recordings and their worth.)
The catch is that there are no discs inside the album. It should be noted that a No. 1 Beatles White Album is known as a “presentation copy;” as such, it would not have been sold to the general public nor would it have contained discs. By shifting the album back and forth, there is the sense that the poster and four photographs of the Beatles that came with the album are indeed inside.
Condition: this White Album, A0000001, was sealed in 1968 at the factory at the request of a company executive. It remains in near-mint 9.8 condition! The cover is absolutely pure snow white, and inasmuch as there are no record discs inside, there is no record impression nor wear due to a record. The corners remain sharp; the clear wrap is intact with areas showing the bunching effects of heat sealing. There is a tiny indentation top center on the cover near the seam.
Several years ago, this extremely rare album was about to be sold at auction when the auction house at the time received a concerning query questioning the authenticity of the original sealed wrapping. With the question raised, the album was removed from the event. When the person raising the question was satisfied, that person wrote a retraction, but the opportunity to have sold the album at that time had passed. In July of 2023, Goldmine Magazine ran an article about this rare White Album. A copy of this letter can be viewed at your request. This extraordinary, sealed Beatles White Album will be sold at auction for the first time this coming December 14th.
The item is part of Invaluable’s Iconic Items From The 20th Century auction and has an opening price of $200,000 USD(159,164 GBP) with an estimate of $750,000 USD – $1,000,000 USD.
Additional letters of endorsement from accomplished Beatles collectors are on file with Guernsey’s and available upon request.
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