First-ever copy of The Beatles’ ‘White Album’ sold at auction for just under $1 million

Numbered version of the original LP sold by Ringo Starr

Ringo Starr has auctioned off the first ever copy of the The Beatles self-titled 1968 album, with the item selling for $910,000 (£600,000) at auction.

More commonly known as ‘The White Album’, each unit of the record came with its own serial number stamped on the cover.

The first numbered copy of the LP was rumoured to be John Lennon’s who, according to Paul McCartney, “shouted the loudest” for it when the band decided to have the copies numbered.


The first four pressings of the album were all in possession of The Beatles, while copy No. 0000005 sold at an auction in 2008 for a little less than $30,000 (£20,000).

The No. 0000001 album was sold by Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills. Proceeds from the sale go to the Lotus Foundation, which was founded by Starr and his wife, Barbara Bach.

Meanwhile, Starr’s former drum kit sold at the auction for $2.2 million (£1.4 million) to Jim Irsay, owner of NFL team the Indianapolis Colts.. The kit was used to record some of The Beatles’ earliest tracks, including ‘Can’t Buy Me Love’, ‘She Loves You’, ‘All My Loving’ and ‘I Want to Hold Your Hand’.


The 1963 Ludwig Oyster Black Pearl three-piece kit was used by Starr for more than 200 performances between May 1963 and February 1964.