Treasurer Stacy Garrity announced the next online auction of unclaimed property items from Treasury’s vault will take place Wednesday October 26, and Friday, October 28. This auction includes fine jewelry, coins, currency and more.
“This is a unique opportunity to highlight our unclaimed property program and get more people interested in finding what is theirs,” Garrity said. “We work diligently to locate the rightful owners of every piece of property that comes into our vault – and I encourage everyone to search for themselves at patreasury.gov/unclaimed-property. But, even though we have the largest working vault in the United States, there is limited space. So, from time to time, we have to auction some of the physical items we receive.”
Pook & Pook, Inc., of Downingtown handles item appraisal and auctioneer services. Auction items can be previewed at pookandpook.com, which is also where interested bidders can register.
More than 3,900 items from Treasury’s vault will be on the auction block over the two days, including:
- Multiple 1 ozt. fine gold South African Krugerrands;
- A Liberty Eagle 1 ozt. gold coin;
- Three U.S. $500 notes featuring President William McKinley;
- A 14K gold, diamond, and gemstone bracelet;
- A 10K gold necklace with a 14K University of North Carolina diamond-studded pendant;
- An Omega 18K gold wristwatch; and
- A custom Breitling stainless steel and black diamond wristwatch.
Some items will be combined into Treasury-only lots. Items from other consignors will also be featured in the auctions but are never comingled with Treasury items.
Items are kept in Treasury’s vault for at least three years before they head to auction. Those sold at auction are carefully tracked and documented. Treasury updates its unclaimed property records to reflect the proceeds from an item’s sale, so if a rightful owner one day comes forward the proceeds of the sale are available for them to claim.
Treasury employees and immediate family members are prohibited from bidding in the auctions.
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.
About one in ten Pennsylvanians is owed some of the more than $4 billion in unclaimed property being safeguarded by Treasury. The average value of a claim is $1,500.