Legendary DB Cooper Skyjacking Cash Certified Some of the ransom money involved in the infamous 1971 "D.B. Cooper" skyjacking has been authenticated and certified by PCGS Currency, a division of Collectors Universe, Inc. (NASDAQ: CLCT).
News-Antique.com - Feb 16,2008 - (Newport Beach, California) -- Nearly two dozen tattered $20 bills from the infamous 1971 "D.B. Cooper" skyjacking have been authenticated by paper money experts at the PCGS Currency division of Collectors Universe, Inc. (NASDAQ: CLCT) of Newport Beach, California. Each note was carefully placed into protective holders to preserve them.
The bills belong to Brian Ingram, 36, of Mena, Arkansas who was eight years old in 1980 when he found the only ransom cash ever recovered from the skyjacking.
"It's exciting to hold a piece of history in your hands that is directly linked to such a famous event," said Laura A. Kessler, Vice President of PCGS Currency (www.PCGSCurrency.com), who headed the certification team.
"Even though the notes were damaged from apparently being in the Columbia River for years, we were able to match serial numbers with those on the FBI’s list of the $200,000 in $20 bills the skyjacker had when he jumped from the jetliner. The surviving notes are now certified as part of the D.B. Cooper cash, and safely in protective, archival storage holders so future generations can enjoy them."
Ingram plans to keep one note and sell the rest. Some of the notes were displayed for the public to see in person for the first time at the Long Beach, California Coin, Stamp & Collectibles Expo in the Long Beach Convention Center, February 14 – 16, 2008.
"This is the only identifiable group of United States currency that can be directly linked to such an historic and infamous event. The only comparison of such significance would possibly be the Lindbergh ransom money, but none of those notes is known to have survived for collectors today," said PCGS Currency President Jason W. Bradford.
"I anticipate there will be a lot of interest in these bills from people who enjoy Americana pop culture as well as collectors of historic paper money. There’s usually a demand for memorabilia anytime you have a famous or infamous event or a legendary figure involved,” said Bradford.
Ingram recalled how he found the cash: “" was eight years old and on vacation with my parents on February 10, 1980, when I found about $5,800 of the ransom money along the banks of the Columbia River near Vancouver, Washington.'
"We were going to make a fire along the river bank. I was on my hands and knees smoothing out the sand with my arm, and I uncovered three bundles of money just below the surface. My uncle thought we should throw it in the fire"
His family turned the money over to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Eventually, the FBI returned approximately 25 bills to them along with dozens of fragments that contained little or no trace of serial numbers. Most of the notes have lightly written initials of FBI agents who inventoried and examined the items soon after they were discovered by Ingram.
No trace has ever been found of the skyjacker, known as 'Dan Cooper' or “D.B. Cooper,” or any other money