Kitchen Renovation Earns Couple $50,000 Due to This Unique Find

By: Tyler Connaghan | Published: Feb 12, 2024

After reading the story about a couple who dug up more than $51,000 worth of treasure underneath their floorboards during a renovation, you may be motivated to seek out some old properties yourself. Who knows what kind of treasure lies beneath each old home? For homeowners John and Gina, it’s likely they never expected to find this.

During a Remodel, This Couple Found an Old Safe

John and Gina decided it was finally time to remodel their kitchen, figuring it was time after the six homeowners before them. What they likely didn’t expect was to find a safe beneath the kitchen island when they tore it out.

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Source: Imgur

The safe was built soundly in the floor and looked relatively old. They knew they had to get it open.

Could It Be Connected to the Code They Found Earlier?

What’s interesting is they also found a code in the medicine cabinet when they first moved into the house. While they weren’t certain what this code was for, they decided to hold on to it in case they needed it.

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Source: Imgur

At first, they thought the safe makeup looked around a few decades old. They tried the code on it a couple of times, and at last, it opened up.

Opening a Door Back In Time

Opening the safe is like opening the portal back in time. They were in complete disbelief at the items they found. 

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Source: Imgur

On the inside, they found a bingo card, a blue book, a seemingly ancient bottle of liquor, and, best of all, a few large piles of cash. John was cautious about reaching his hand into the safe, as he feared it might be booby-trapped.

Thankfully, There Were No Booby Traps

Luckily for the couple, there were no booby traps at all. After counting the money, which was mostly organized into stacks of $100 bills, they realize they had exactly $51,080. 

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Source: Etsy

Could they thank whoever left this cash here for their dream kitchen remodel?

Discovering a Fresh Bottle of James E. Pepper

The classiest find was the bottle of James E. Pepper. Not knowing what it was, they went to Wikipedia to find out more. 

Source: Imgur

James E. Pepper is a bottle of liquor made by The man who was credited with inventing the old-fashioned, a drink made up of whiskey, a lemon peel, bitters, and a sugar cube. Not a bad drink to celebrate their finds.

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The Top Seal Was In Perfect Condition

Luckily for them, the seal on this bottle, which was aged six years, was still completely intact and had a tax stamp from 1960. 

Source: Imgur

After doing a little bit of research online, they realize that this particular bottle of whiskey was a top-tier purchase and an extremely rare discovery. Surely any whiskey aficionado would be jealous.

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Opening Up “A Guide for the Perplexed”

The book, which was published in 1977, had the title, A Guide for the Perplexed by E.F. Schumacher. On the inside of the book was a photo of what appeared to be Gregory Peck.

Source: Imgur

Upon further examining the book, they found what appeared to be a few clues that the original owner was giving them.

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They Even Discovered an Old Note in the Back

Beyond the clues, they found a note in the back that was addressed to a man named Alan. 

Source: Imgur

The note read, “Alan, I have a book you must read. I’ve underlined a few key passages. Your friend, Vincent.” This was certainly the beginning of a mystery movie if the couple had ever seen one.

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On Page 7, There Was a Map

On page 7, the couple discovered a map of the state of Arizona. While they thought it to be some kind of bookmark, they soon realized that it was an educational flash card with a large ‘X’ atop Mesa, a city just outside of the metro Phoenix area. 

Source: Imgur

On the front of the card, they found a larger outline of the state of Arizona highlighted in light green with a few additional “mountain states.”

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The Mystery Gets Deeper

They also found an underlined passage on page 7, which was found in the first chapter titled “Our Philosophical Maps.” 

Source: Imgur

The underlined passage read, “One way of looking at the world as a whole is by means of a map, that is to say, some sort of plan or outline that shows where various things are to be found.”

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More Underlined Passages Spark Curiosity

They found another underlined passage on page 11, which was directly next to a photo of what looked like an estate or home.

Source: Imgur

The underlined passage read, “ There yielded such fruitful results.” What could it all mean?

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This Was Beginning to Feel Like a Treasure Hunt

Finding even more clues flipping through the book, it was beginning to feel like a real-life treasure hunt.

Source: Imgur

The couple found another photo, which was stowed away near the back of the book. On the backside of the picture, in handwritten ink, read, “Where one tree becomes three.” For all John and Gina knew, this could be the first clue.

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Unfortunately, They Were Unsure Where the Picture Was Taken

The old sepia-colored photo they found did not look familiar to them in any way, and they were not sure where it was taken or where the unique tree might exist.

Source: The Chive

They decided to post it online to see if any strangers could offer help on their treasure hunt.

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Another Underlined Passage On Page 14

As they kept digging, they found an additional underlined passage on page 14, reading, “ Most modern readers will be reluctant to believe that perfect happiness is attainable by methods of which their modern world knows nothing.”

Source: Imgur

The seemingly innocent treasure hunt was now moving into the realm of philosophical debate. The couple needed more clues.

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The Bingo Card Had Circles Around Three Numbers

Opening up the old Bingo card, they found three numbers that had been circled.

Source: Imgur

John noted that the code they originally found in the medicine cabinet also had three numbers, which worked for the safe. Naturally, it could mean that the bingo card’s three numbers belong to another safe around the mysterious tree.

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The Couple Still Hasn’t Determined How to Spend the Money

The couple has been trying to decide what to do with the money that they had found, though they have not made a decision quite yet. However, they know that the note was for a man named Alan, so they say if Alan happens to see this story, he is welcome to come to reclaim his cash.

Source: Imgur

With that said, the couple is definitely keeping the bottle of whiskey!

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What Does It All Mean?

This is an absolutely incredible find, from the safe to the whiskey to the potential of a full-fledged treasure hunt.

Source: Imgur

Not only did John and Gina discover something incredible beneath their floors, but they also have the potential to find much more if they continue searching.

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Remodelers Discover Artifacts During Renovations All The Time

Of course, John and Gina aren’t the first ones to discover unique possessions during home renovations. In fact, it happens all the time, especially if you live in a house that was built in the 19th century or before.

Source: The Chive

From hidden illicit goods to cash to timeless artifacts, there is real excitement to stepping back in history and getting the story of the people who lived in your home long before you.

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Imagine What Could Be Beneath Your Floorboards

Have you ever thought of what could be beneath your floorboards?

Source: Reddit

Many people dream about owning homes, though few ever believe that they’ll end up possessing a unique piece of history through home ownership. If you live in an old town, however, there’s a good chance that treasure lies within the walls, floors, or attics, whether valuable or not.

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