President Roosevelt’s Beloved Pocket Watch Was Stolen Nearly 40 Years Ago, And Up Until Now, The Watch’s Whereabouts Remained A Mystery

Scisetti Alfio - - illustrative purposes only

For almost 40 years, a pocket watch that once belonged to President Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt has been missing ever since it was stolen from a museum exhibition. Finally, it turned up at an auction house in Florida decades later. Here’s what happened.

In 1971, the president’s pocket watch was put on display at the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site in Buffalo, New York.

But in 1987, someone took the watch from its case, which was unlocked at the time. From then on, the FBI and the National Park Service have been searching for the watch.

Until now, the watch’s whereabouts have remained a mystery. After all these years, the historic artifact made its way to Florida.

It ended up in the possession of Edwin Bailey, the owner of Blackwell Auctions in Clearwater, Florida.

There was an inscription of the president’s name on the watch, leading Bailey to believe it had belonged to Theodore Roosevelt. However, no documents came with the watch, so he needed to find other ways to verify ownership.

He contacted the Sagamore Hill National Historic Site, the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural National Historic Site, and two museums associated with the president. They confirmed that the watch seemed to be a genuine artifact.

In 2023, right before he put the watch up for auction, several prospective buyers visited Bailey. The buyers were actually FBI agents.

After recovering the watch, they returned it to Sagamore Hill during a repatriation ceremony. Many officials from agencies that worked to solve the case of the missing watch were in attendance.

Scisetti Alfio – – illustrative purposes only

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