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Beatles memorabilia museum opens in Argentina

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina -- A brick from The Cavern Club, a check for 11 pounds signed by Ringo Starr, an "authentic" Beatles wig. These and thousands of other objects related to the "Fab Four" are luring Beatles fans to a new museum in Buenos Aires.

The museum is the product of the particular "Beatlemania" obsession of Rodolfo Vazquez, a 53-year-old accountant who became a fan at the age of 10 when he got their "Rubber Soul" record. "With the song 'In My Life' I fell in love with the Beatles," he said.

Vazquez scooped up all the memorabilia he could find in Buenos Aires about history's most famous rock band, an obsession that grew until he made it into Guinness World Records in 2001 as having the planet's largest collection.

At that point, Guinness noted that he had 5,612 items in the attic of his home in Buenos Aires. His hoard has grown to more than 8,500 records, gadgets, puppets and games since then, more than 2,200 of which are on display in the Beatle Museum that just opened this month on Avenue Corrientes, in an area of the capital where tourists throng.

There are Beatles museums in Liverpool, England, and Hamburg, Germany, that display memorabilia along with objects from the band members' lives, and other private collections as well -- Julian Lennon has many that show the more personal side of the four band members, published in the book "Beatles Memorabilia. The collection of Julian Lennon," including drawings his late father sent him when the Beatles were on tour.

But this storefront museum stands out for the sheer quantity of pieces, carefully arranged in display cases and on the walls.

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