Courtesy PBS
Alex Heigl
February 06, 2014 10:30 AM

It’s one of the best returns on an investment ever: A Motown collector buys a few albums and 45s for a handful of change and finds Marvin Gaye’s passport – valued at $20,000 – inside.

In an episode of PBS’s Antiques Roadshow that aired Monday, a former Motown Museum collector described attending the estate sale for an unnamed Motown musician who had passed away. The man bought a few albums and 45s.

“I think it was 50 cents an album and a quarter for a 45,” he said. “When I got home, I was going through them and out of an album fell this passport … it literally fell into my hands.”

“The thing I’m in love with is how young [Marvin Gaye] is here,” appraiser Laura Woolley said of the find. “1964, he’s still in the prime of his life and having the best time. His career’s really starting to take off.”

“Passport collecting is a really vibrant collecting world because there’s usually only a few of them throughout your life; you only replace them every so often,” Woolley added. “I wouldn’t put less than $20,000 on the passport if you were to insure it,” she said.

“Nothing comes up for Marvin Gaye,” she explained. “It’s not a really common thing to see Marvin Gaye memorabilia.”

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