Hidden Treasures Frequently Asked Questions


  • All non-History Center members must pay museum admission, even if you are not having items appraised.
  • You are allowed to bring two items per person for appraisal. If you bring additional items, we will ask that you to return them to your car.
  • Items must fit through a standard doorway.  You must be able to move the item(s) through the event on your own.
  • Antique firearms will be permitted, but must be inspected by our gun expert before they will be allowed into the appraisal line.
  • Objects brought to the History Center cannot be left as a donation.
  • The History Center is not responsible for the loss or damage to any items brought with you.  Please check with the Security Booth if you have lost any items.
  • You are not permitted to barter, buy, or sell any objects brought for appraisal.  Similarly, while at the History Center, appraisers are not permitted to offer you money or goods in exchange for your item(s). If this happens, please notify a History Center staff member immediately.
  • The History Center staff cannot provide an appraisal for monetary value for any objects. However, they can assist with determining the historic significance of your object(s).
  • The Café @ The History Center is open from 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • The event ends at 3:00 p.m.  All visitors who are in a line at that time will be seen by an appraiser.


  • History Center staff will quickly evaluate each item and give you a card that indicates which floor, table number, and appraiser you should visit. Please keep these cards handy at all times so our staff can guide you to the appropriate location for an appraisal.
  • Wait times with the individual appraisers can vary. We appreciate your patience.
  • The History Center makes every effort to invite appraisers with a wide range of specialties in order to meet the needs of our visitors. However, it is possible that there may not be an appraiser for every type of item brought to the History Center during the event.
  • If your assigned appraiser cannot appraise your item, alert a staff member and we will re-assign you to another appraiser or take your contact information to provide further information after the event.
  • Appraisers will provide information, to the best of their ability, on the object’s historic significance and provide a verbal estimation of the value of the item(s). No written appraisals will be provided.
  • To arrange for a paid written appraisal, you may contact the appraiser after the event.


  • A variety of conservators, who work with the History Center’s Museum Conservation Center, will be on hand throughout the day to provide tips on how to best conserve your items for future generations.
  • Conservators will be stationed throughout the museum on the event day. Please ask a History Center staff member if you need assistance locating a conservator on your floor.
  • Conservator: Someone who is responsible for the care of objects.
  • Appraiser: Someone who estimates the worth, value, or quality of objects.


  • Appraisers and KDKA-TV producers determine which items are filmed based a variety of factors, including monetary value, historical significance, and personal story.
  • If an appraiser determines your item should be considered for filming and you agree to participate, a History Center staff member will take you to the filming area in the Great Hall (first floor).
  • Appraisers will not reveal the verbal estimate until you are filming on set. If you choose not to participate in the filming, you will be given your estimate at the table.
  • Please note that wait times for filming can vary. We appreciate your patience while you wait.
  • Not all segments that are filmed will appear in the final shows on KDKA-TV.