Some of the most interesting items in State Treasurer Clint Zweifel's Unclaimed Property vaults in Jefferson City were recently put on display. The items were found in more than 1,000 new safe deposit boxes that have been turned over by law to the State Treasurer since November of last year. The safe deposit boxes are being opened and catalogued so their contents can be returned to their legal owners or heirs. A signed photo of Spencer Tracy, a St. Bernard-shaped nutcracker, antique tools and four Purple Hearts were among the items on display.
"Each year I receive hundreds of safe deposit boxes and my staff goes through each one to catalog the contents for its owners or their heirs," Zweifel said. "Safe deposit boxes represent less than one percent of the $700 million of Unclaimed Property that I protect, but these boxes provide an interesting glimpse in to what is important to people. A lock of hair, family pictures, military medals, a high school diploma from 1928 - these items tell the stories of life in Missouri. I encourage everyone to regularly check www.ShowMeMoney.com for their name and to sign up for email alerts as new Unclaimed Property is added every week."
As required by law, banks turn over safe deposit boxes after five years of no contact with the owners. Since the beginning of the year, the State Treasurer has received boxes from more than 180 banks. Since January 2009, more than $147 million in Unclaimed Property has been returned to more than 475,000 account owners.