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It's one of the oldest forms of banking. And until the 1950s, it was the leading form of consumer credit in the United States. Part Antiques Roadshow, part Sanford & Son, Pawn Stars is centered on the Harrison family-owned Gold & Silver Pawn Shop on the outskirts of Las Vegas, where three generations of men--grandfather Richard, son Rick and grandson Corey --entertainingly clash through their differences to jointly run the business.
The Antiques Roadshow appeal is reflected in the variety of goods that colorful customers come to pawn, which range from the commonplace to the truly historic: a Samurai sword from the 1500s, a Superbowl ring, a Picasso painting, a 17th century Stay of Execution are examples of some recently pawned items.
That's where the sharp-eyed skills of the family owners come into play, as they must carefully assess the value of each item, determine if it's real or fake and then reveal the often surprising answer to "What's it worth?"