Man pays $20 for abandoned storage unit filled with historic documents worth thousands

An Arizona man paid $20 for an abandoned storage unit that turned out to be filled with historical documents and other valuable items worth thousands.

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Don Smith found a collection of about 200 letters that once belonged to Henry Ellsworth Barbour, a California congressman from 1919 to 1933, the Arizona Republic reported.

Among the epistles are two letters signed by President Herbert Hoover, White House invitations from President Warren Harding and an invitation to the groundbreaking ceremony of the Golden Gate bridge.

A gold pocket watch, valued at $1,200, could be the most expensive item. The items, estimated to be worth $10,000, will be sold at auction Friday.

Inspired by the show "Storage Wars," Smith started buying lockers about eight years ago, the Arizona Republic reported.

"This is the most interesting unit and the most historical unit I've found," Smith told the Republic. "I don't know if it's the most valuable yet, but for the amount I paid, it might be."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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