John Lennon’s half-sister Victoria is born

While her husband Alf was away at sea, Julia Lennon lived with their son John at the Dairy Cottage, 120a Allerton Road in Woolton, Liverpool. The cottage was owned by George Smith, the husband of Julia's sister Mimi.

As Alf was so often away at sea, Julia often spent evenings at dance halls. In 1942 she met a Welsh soldier known as Taffy Williams, who was stationed at Mossley Hill barracks in Liverpool.

Julia fell pregnant by Williams in late 1944, although initially she claimed she had been raped by an unknown soldier. Williams refused to live with her unless she gave up John, as he didn't want the shame of being with a married woman and her son, but the relationship ended when she refused.

When Alf Lennon returned to Liverpool in 1944 he offered to look after Julia, John and the unborn baby, but Julia told him their relationship was over.

Julia gave birth on 19 June 1945. Her daughter, named Victoria Elizabeth, was born at the Salvation Army's Elmswood Infirmary on Liverpool's North Mossley Hill Road.

After pressure from Julia's family, Victoria was given up for adoption to a Norwegian Salvation Army captain, Peder Pedersen, and his wife Margaret. The child was renamed Ingrid Marie Pedersen and was raised in Norway.

John Lennon was never told about his half-sister's existence. Ingrid discovered her famous sibling, however, in 1966 while working as a nurse. Wishing to get married, she had to produce her birth certificate and found that she was related to a Beatle.

As soon as I became aware that John was my brother I started to collect every cutting on him I could find and hid them in a drawer in my bedroom. I was terrified in case my parents found out. It would have been a betrayal of them.

I felt I couldn't contact John when my adoptive mother was still alive. I felt an incredible loyalty to her because I believe she knew I was dad's real daughter and she took me in as her own daughter with no obvious resentment about his affair with Julia.

I knew Mum kept a tin box in her wardrobe that contained family papers. When no one was around I opened it, trembling. I found a yellowing, dog-eared adoption paper that had been issued by Liverpool County Court. Then I saw my full name: Lillian Ingrid Maria Pedersen, and my birth date. Above that were the three words I had been looking for: Victoria Elizabeth Lennon - the name I was born with. My real mother's name, Julia Lennon, was also there. I burst into tears.

Ingrid Pedersen, 2000
Melbourne Sunday Herald Sun
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7 responses on “John Lennon’s half-sister Victoria is born

  1. McLerristarr

    In the article it says Ingrid was the daughter of a Welsh soldier and was adopted by a Norwegian couple but in the quote it says she was living with her real dad. There seems to be two conflicting stories there.

    1. Joe Post author

      You’re right, it does seem strange. All the accounts I’ve read indicate her father was Williams, but her quote does suggest that her real father was Peder Pedersen. I’ll try to get some clarification on that.

  2. Moon

    I have this strange memory of John being interviewed on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Radio program Morningside.The guest host was an Erika Peterson and through out the interview John kept teasing her asking her if she was sure her name wasn’t Victoria.This left her confused and John disappointed and confused and apologetic. in the recent movie Nowhere Boy,they have him witness a confrontation between Mimi and Julia where Victoria is mentioned. I thought this sounded wrong,but when I reread John,My Brother by Julia Baird,it’s there.Julia found out about this after discussing with John about a persistent fan named Tony who had been researching his own family tree and became convinced he was her brother.I don’t know if the updated book discusses this.I’ve found it impossible to find in Canada. I once heard a rumour that Ingrid immigrated to Canada,but only found out she was John’s sister after he died.Is this interview for real?Does anyone have any updated information on her?

  3. Prasun

    In this video (in french although she speaks in english) she confirms she that her adoptive dad Peder Pedersen is also her real dad (at about 1:00 until 1:15). Later in the interview she says that John knew of her existence and was looking for her but under the wrong name and date of birth (she didn’t come forward because she promised her adoptive mother she wouldn’t).

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