‘Pawn Stars’: One Collector Has Vintage Piggy Banks That May be Too Good to be True

by Courtney Blackann

The “Pawn Stars” personalities have seen a lot of historical items throughout the years. They’re certainly knowledgeable when it comes to antiques or vintage pieces of American history. This is why when a customer brings in a collection of 19th-century piggy banks, Rick Harrison has some real questions.

During a clip from season five of the show, a customer is proud to show off his vintage collection of cast iron banks. But Harrison has some doubts. The items are indeed interesting. The piggy banks are unusual and rare. People collected them well into the 20th century as their popularity grew.

Further, the cast iron piggy banks are in fantastic working condition. This is a red flag for Harrison because the collection is supposedly 100 years old. However, he’s been known to be wrong before, which is why the “Pawn Stars” frontman decided to bring in a vintage toy expert.

A man named Jonny who owns an antique toy store comes to the Las Vegas-based shop to do an evaluation.

Uncovering Fake Items

After carefully looking them over, he realizes the old toys are missing some key patent engravings and trap doors. He also notes how fantastically the toys appear for being a century old. All of this is an indicator that the collection of unique piggy banks is most likely unauthentic.

The customer notes that he obtained the items years ago from Europe and the United States – and he’s super disappointed to learn they are not true pieces from the time period.

However, Harrison shares that they are still pretty interesting – and offers the customer $100 total for all four pieces. This is far less than the $1,500 apiece the disheartened customer was hoping to get.

He tells Harrison that, ‘for that amount, I think I’ll just keep them for the memories.”

The “Pawn Stars” host says he’s sorry they couldn’t make a deal, but that collectors are not going to be interested in an unauthentic collection.

While the customer understands and agrees, noting he had some small concerns the toy collection might be a reproduction, he doesn’t hide his disappointment.

How “Pawn Stars” Determine What’s Aired on Show

Uncovering fake items is all a part of the job for the “Pawn Stars.” However, not everything that’s brought in to the shop is filmed for the show. Because the History Channel show is about entertainment and education, Harrison, along with producers, choose which items will be aired.

“Basically if it’s something different and it hasn’t been on the show before,” Rick shared with Freesat. “Sometimes I see just a picture of something and then I’ll approve it. And then I won’t see it again until it’s actually in front of me a couple of months later.”

He goes on to say that, “sometimes I actually have to stop the camera and do a little research. But in general that’s all me, I’m just that nerd you see on television and that’s how we do it. Usually, if it’s something different and cool. It’s normally based off an image on the internet, a really small one, and I think it looks really cool. I say bring it on in. Because with most of these things if you want to see if it’s real you’ve got to see it in person.”