Old article, but interesting When a Home Renovation Digs Up Buried Treasure In April 2005, Andrew Mayes was renovating a home he’d bought in Lockport Township, near Chicago. While knocking out a wall in a closet, he discovered several unusual antiques: Several boxes of ammunition with a receipt dated 1940 and a mint-condition 1928 A1 Thompson submachine gun, a favorite of 1930s Chicago gangsters. Surprised by his unusual find, Mayes immediately contacted the police, who quickly confiscated the weapon and ammunition. A sheriff’s spokesman, who estimated the gun’s value at around $10,000, praised Mayes for his honesty and noted that since Illinois state law prohibits civilians from owning automatic weapons, Mayes would not have been able to sell the gun if he had kept it to himself. He could have even faced up to 10 years in prison for possessing or selling an illegal and unregistered weapon. While Mayes was unlucky in that he discovered something he wasn’t allowed to keep, don’t assume that what you find will automatically be taken away from you. In March 2006, for example, a demolition crew uncovered a stack of bills worth over $30,000 hidden in the walls of a flood-ravaged home in New Orleans. The surprised homeowner, a woman in her 50s who opted to remain anonymous, believed the money had been stashed away by her father, who grew up during the Depression and was wary of banks. And, once the woman’s identity was confirmed, she was allowed to keep every cent. When a Home Renovation Digs Up Buried Treasure Pity!