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Treasurer Stacy Garrity Announces Auction of Unclaimed Property

From a press release

Treasurer Stacy Garrity today announced that the upcoming online auction of unclaimed property will take place Wednesday, April 12, and Thursday, April 13. This auction includes fine jewelry, coins, currency, and many other items that have been safeguarded in Treasury’s vault. The majority of Treasury’s items will be featured on April 12.

“We have the largest working vault in the nation, but we’re constantly receiving new unclaimed property,” Garrity said. “Sometimes, we have to auction off items to make space for that incoming property. We’ve worked for at least three years to find the rightful owner of every item being auctioned. I hope that learning about this auction will inspire more Pennsylvanians to see if they have any unclaimed property waiting by searching here.”

Treasury partners with Pook & Pook, Inc., in Downingtown for appraisal and auctioneer services. Items up for auction can be previewed here.  Interested bidders can also register on Pook & Pook’s website.

The auction will feature 4,250 items from Treasury’s vault, including:

  • A 14K two-tone gold stick pin brooch with 2-carat diamond;
  • Multiple Engelhard 100 Troy ounce 999+ fine silver bars;
  • $20 Liberty Head Double Eagle gold coins;
  • One-ounce fine gold Canadian $50 Maple Leaf coins;
  • Morgan dollars;
  • An 18K yellow gold George Melleze pocket watch with a silver-colored key attached; and
  • Various comic books and magazines.

All Treasury items listed in the auction are subject to change at any time prior to the sale. In this case, Treasury is made aware of changes that may be made due to new information regarding an item’s authenticity, change in value, quality or other determining factor.

“There are some remarkable items available to bid on in this auction,” Garrity said. “Any proceeds will be carefully tracked – and will always be available for the rightful owner to claim any time, even years or decades from now.”

Unclaimed property comes to Treasury in accordance with state law. Tangible property, like the items being auctioned, most often comes from abandoned safe deposit boxes, with other items coming from college dorms, nursing homes, or police evidence rooms. Unclaimed property also includes balances of forgotten bank accounts, uncashed checks, stocks, insurance policies and more.

The online auctions will also include items from other consignors. Treasury items may be combined into lots but will never be comingled with non-Treasury items. Treasury employees and immediate family members are prohibited from bidding in the auctions.

Property is safeguarded in the vault for at least three years before being auctioned. Treasury updates its unclaimed property records to reflect the proceeds from an item’s sale, so if a rightful owner comes forward the proceeds are available to claim.

About one in ten Pennsylvanians is owed some of the more than $4 billion in unclaimed property. The average value of a claim is $1,600.


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