We all have dreamt of stumbling into an old house to discover some treasure. Or we dream that we go into the attic with our grandparents. There they show us all the things that were passed on from generation to generation. And we stumble upon a rare antique that is worth a fortune. Yes, I know, everyone dreams of that. And you would be surprised to know that this does happen once in a while.
There were many instances where someone stumbled into an antique which later turned out to be severely undervalued or they got it for free. When they found out about their investments in an antique for sale shows or auction they were taken aback. Here are a few cases of undervalued antiques that were later found to be worth a small fortune.
A Humble Vase
Imagine buying a vase from the thrift shop and then finding out it is worth a fortune. This is what happened to one guest in the Antiques Roadshow. The man had bought the vase for 4.99 and brought it for an appraisal. One of the experts there recognized the vase and said that it was a gorgeous Overbeck.
Overbeck Sisters is a pottery company from Indiana that was found by four sisters in the early 1900s. The Overbeck Sisters marked their pottery with a distinguishable OBK signature on the bottom. The vase in question was so well preserved that it was valued from $50,000 to $100,000 if the owner wanted to sell it.
An Authentic Declaration of Independence
In a New York Times article, a story about the declaration of independence was published. The article stated that an authenticated copy of the declaration of independence was found. The copy was found in the desk of a descendant of a colonial settler.
The document referenced as a Holt Broadside and was published on July 9, 1776, by John Holt in Manhattan. 500 copies of this document were supposed to have been distributed while this is one of the few that have been discovered. The document was the only privately owned piece at the time of discovery and was sold for 1.5 million dollars back in 2017.
Neil Armstrong’s Moon Rock Collecting Bag
Seized asset auctions are amazing for getting the best value buys. However, this turned out to be a life-changing event for one Nancy Clark. A lawyer by trade Nancy Clark from Illinois bought Neil Armstrong’s moon rock collection bag from a government auction. She got the historic artifact from the first lunar landing at around 995 dollars.
After getting the artifact verified from NASA and suing them to get the product back, she started to look for an appraisal. She sold the artifact through Sotheby’s for a whopping 1.8 million dollars. I would call it a stellar return on her initial investment, won’t you?
A Garage Sale Brooch
You would be over the moon if you found out that a Brooch you bought at a garage sale for 8 dollars turned out to be made of emerald, diamond, and ruby. Most of us would. This is what happened a person bought this 19th-century pin set from a garage sale in Ohio.
The brooch had a 1.39-carat diamond, a Colombian emerald that weighed 1.50 carats and a .60 carat oval Burmese ruby. The odd thing was, the brooch was left in the bottom of a handbag for a long time. When the owner discovered the brooch again a jeweler gave the good news. This pin set brought in 26000 dollars at the September 2017 auction at Bonham in New York. While many antiques sold for a lot more in the auction this story was considered the focal point because of the story behind it.
This should give you reason enough to look for bargains everywhere and keep a keen eye on your things. Check the product price in an online antique shop. If you find something of value in your possession you can put the antique up for sale.
The Forgotten Frankenstein
In an abandoned movie theatre in Long Island, New York, the most expensive Frankenstein movie poster was found. Discovered by a man who used to work there the poster was left in the abandoned projection room forgotten to time.
This 6-foot poster of the 1931 classic is the only one of its kind to exist. The style C three sheet poster was apparently used several times by the theatre but then forgotten. Considered a rare piece of Hollywood History by movie aficionados the poster sold for 358000 dollars. Just imagine stumbling into a piece of paper that makes you almost half a million dollars.
The World of Antiques
So these were the 5 undervalued items that people found which made them a fortune. The story behind each item is unique and captivating. The stories almost instill a belief that this can happen to you as well. This is why you should always keep looking for bargains and keep a detailed log of anything that looks like an antique. Use nearby antique shops, online antique stores and any other methods to keep knowledge about the scene. And if you come into possession of anything worth the money then cash in.