Riggs bank's archives rich in history

June 21, 2006 at 7:53 AM
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WASHINGTON, June 20 (UPI) -- PNC Bank of Pittsburgh may have inherited a treasure trove of U.S. historical artifacts in its take over of the Riggs Bank in Washington.

Among the items contained behind Riggs' thick steel door of a 40-year-old basement bank vault in downtown Washington is a $3 check dated Aug. 28, 1861, made out by President Abraham Lincoln to "Mr. Johns (a sick man)," reports The Washington Post.

The venerable bank's other customers have ranged from Davy Crockett to President George H.W. Bush, says the report.

PNC Bank, which took over Riggs in May of last year, is taking an inventory of these artifacts that include letters, notes and checks written by George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, Theodore Roosevelt and Eleanor Roosevelt, says the Post.

John Tydings, who heads the inventory project, told the Post PNC "recognized the need to address this in a much more sensitive way because of the connection of these records to the history of this country, as well as the history of the bank and the history of the city." He said PNC will decide whether to donate, display or store what it has inherited from its historic predecessor, says the report.

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