DES MOINES, Iowa – State Treasurer Michael Fitzgerald has a pot o’ gold better than the one waiting at the end of the rainbow to give back to Iowans. He is looking to reunite owners this St. Patrick’s Day with lost and forgotten cherished treasures. “The Great Iowa Treasure Hunt has an assortment of mementos from safe deposit box contents waiting to be claimed,” Fitzgerald said. “We have several unclaimed items in the vault. Items include emerald and gold jewelry, silver bars, coins and even a silver ounce from the Horseshoe Hotel and Casino.”
Each year, the Great Iowa Treasure Hunt returns millions of dollars in unclaimed property to the rightful owners. Common forms of unclaimed property include savings or checking accounts, stocks, uncashed checks, life insurance policies, utility security deposits and safe deposit box contents. “I’m hoping Iowans will recognize some of these items so they can be returned to their owner,” stated Fitzgerald. “I encourage all past and present Iowans, non-profits and businesses to search our records at GreatIowaTreasuureHunt.gov for unclaimed property that belongs to them. Searching only takes a few minutes, and you never know what you are going to find – one of these coins could be your lucky penny!”
The Great Iowa Treasure Hunt has more than three million names of individuals and businesses all over the state that have lost or forgotten money. The program has returned over $277 million since Fitzgerald started it in 1983. Unclaimed property refers to money and other assets held by financial institutions or companies that have lost contact with the property’s owner for a specific period of time. State law requires these institutions and companies to annually report unclaimed property to the state treasurer’s office. The assets are then held until the owner or heir of the property is found.