My favorite episodes of the Antiques Roadshow are the ones where somebody brings in something they bought at a rummage sale or found in the attic of a house they just moved into and discovers it's worth a million damn dollars. My other favorite episodes include people who bring in something they THINK is worth a fortune and find out it isn't. Oh, the looks on their faces! It's priceless. (Anybody remember the episode of the couple who just KNEW they had an original Tiffany vase and found out it was a knock off? They thought they had purchased it from an unwitting antiques dealer. The Roadshow appraiser confirmed the original dealer's identification of the piece [decorative glass] and value, $400. The look on the woman's face was classic!)
But back to the pricey originals. Here are the top five most valuable items ever to come across the Antiques Roadshow appraisers:
- 18th Century Chinese Quianlong Period jade collection, valued at $710K to $1,070,000, pictured above.
- Oil painting by Clyfford Still, valued at $500K.
- Navajo First Phase Chief's Blanket, valued at $350K to $500K.
- Oil painting by James Henry Beard, valued at $300K to $500K.
- Original artwork from Peanuts by Charles M. Schulz, valued at $450K.
So which of them were family heirlooms with which the owners could not part? Out of the three heirlooms here, the jade collection, blanket and Beard painting, only one is still in the family. The blanket and jade were sold, cash winning out over sentimentality.
For the history of each of these acquisitions and to find out what happened to them after the shows on which they appeared aired, (plus other juicy tidbits) follow this link to Daily Finance. It's worth the trip!