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On average, two diamonds are found every day at Crater of Diamonds.They're not all as big as The Uncle Sam Diamond, but maybe you'll get lucky. Mental Floss: 10 diamond-encrusted things you don't need If getting your hands dirty isn't your idea of fun, maybe you should start hitting garage sales and thrift stores to find valuables buried among the castoff bread machines and Members Only jackets. Michael Sparks was visiting a Nashville thrift store, where he bought a candleholder, a set of salt and pepper shakers, and a yellowed print of the Declaration of Independence.
After looking over the document for a few days, he wondered if it might be older than he initially thought.
Through his research he found the Kennedy Galleries in Manhattan, which handles many of Heade's works, and asked them to take a look at his painting.
They agreed and were able to verify that the piece of artwork covering the hole in his wall was a previously unknown Heade painting, since named Magnolias on Gold Velvet Cloth.
When he got his new stuff home, he decided to strategically hang the picture to cover up a hole in the wall that had been bugging him.
Some years later he was playing a board game called Masterpiece in which players attempt to outbid one another for artwork at an auction.
It took a year for Sparks to have the print authenticated and preserved, and then he put it up for auction, netting a final sale price of 7,650.
The salt and pepper shakers, on the other hand, were still worthless. A good Heade for bargains One day, an employee at a tool-and-die company in Indiana spent for a few pieces of used furniture and an old painting of some flowers.
However, the government is required to pay fair market value for a treasure trove, meaning the farmer and Lawes split a cool £1.75 million (about .8 million). Bassum found a giant of a gemstone in 1924 -- a 40.23 carat diamond.
The Hoxne Hoard is now on permanent display at the British Museum, drawing thousands of people every year. It might surprise you to hear that he wasn't digging in one of the famous South African diamond mines at the time, but was near Murfreesboro, Arkansas, at a site that is now the Crater of Diamonds State Park. No matter how valuable it is." Bassum's big find -- nicknamed "The Uncle Sam Diamond," the largest diamond ever discovered in North America -- was later cut down to 12.42 carat and sold for 0,000 in 1971 (About 0,000 today).
While looking for the hammer, Lawes happened upon something else of interest -- 24 bronze coins, 565 gold coins, 14,191 silver coins, plus hundreds of gold and silver spoons, jewelry, and statues, all dating back to the Roman Empire.
As required by British law, the so-called "Hoxne Hoard" was reported to the local authorities, who declared it a "Treasure Trove," meaning it was now legally the property of Britain.
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