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Treasurer Stacy Garrity Returns Stolen Gold Records to the Family of Philadelphia Music Industry Icon

Jimmy Bishop Sr. was an influential disc jockey, producer, and host in Philadelphia

Bala Cynwyd, PA - Today at iHeartMedia studios, Treasurer Stacy Garrity returned three gold records to the family of Jimmy Bishop Sr., who earned widespread acclaim for his work as a disc jockey at Philadelphia’s WDAS Radio in the 1960s. The gold records were reported to Treasury as unclaimed property.

Jimmy Bishop Sr. was tremendously influential in the Philadelphia music industry, and he helped give many big acts their first hit records, including The Jackson 5, The Temptations, The Supremes, The Marvelettes, Stevie Wonder and others.

“I’m thrilled and honored to be returning these gold records, which are truly invaluable pieces of Philadelphia’s music history, to the Bishop family. It’s even more meaningful to return them at WDAS, a truly legendary radio station where Jimmy Bishop Sr. was on the air for so many years. As Treasurer, I’ve returned a lot of unclaimed property – but this return is truly historic.”

Pennsylvania State Treasurer Stacy Garrity

“Music is about melodies, messages, memories, and connections. My father was a popular WDAS alumnus known just as much for his distinctive voice and his connection with audiences as he was for being a pioneer of Black radio who helped promote the successes of many Black artists, songs, and causes. Thank you, Treasurer Garrity, for connecting us to these gold records, which truly are golden memories for our family.”

Jimmy Bishop Jr., the youngest son of Jimmy Bishop Sr., who followed in the footsteps of his father and mother, Reverend Louise Williams Bishop, at WDAS

Treasurer Garrity presented the gold records to Jimmy Sr.’s wife, Louise Williams Bishop, who was also a prominent Philadelphia radio personality known as the Gospel Queen, along with his children Jimmy Jr. and Tabb.

The gold records returned include:

  • Eddie Holman – “Hey There Lonely Girl”
  • Earth Wind & Fire – “Head to the Sky”
  • Barry White – “Standing in the Shadows of Love” and “Bring Back My Yesterday”

“iHeartMedia Philly and WDAS FM are excited to partner with The Pennsylvania Treasury Department to not only host the return of iconic Gold Records to Jimmy Bishop and the Bishop family but also raise awareness about unclaimed property.”

Loraine Ballard Morrill, iHeartMedia Director of News and Community Affairs, Philadelphia Region

“While unclaimed property making its way back to its rightful owner is always a thrilling moment, this one is particularly exciting! I’m glad these rare, framed gold records are returning to where they belong. My office is always happy to help constituents with unclaimed property searches, so if folks want to see what they might be entitled to, I encourage them to reach out.”

Senator Amanda Cappelletti (D-17)

“Our office is active with Pennsylvania's unclaimed property program. My staff obtains information from the Treasury on assets that they are holding for our constituents. We are then able to contact individual residents to inform them of these holdings. This work is a great example of government working together to improve the lives of Pennsylvania’s citizens.”

Rep. Mary Jo Daley (D-148)

Gold records were first designated by the Recording Industry Association of America in 1958 and awarded to singles or albums that reached at least 500,000 in sales.

The framed gold records were recovered in January 1986 from a pawn shop as part of a police investigation into a burglary ring that hit locations in both Philadelphia and Abington. After the Abington Township Police Department no longer needed them as evidence, they reported the gold records to Treasury as unclaimed property, as required by state law.

“One of my top priorities as Treasurer is returning the $4.5 billion worth of unclaimed property in Treasury’s care to the rightful owners, and that includes the many tangible items safeguarded in our vault. I encourage every Pennsylvanian to check our website,, to see if they have any unclaimed property available to be returned to them.”

Pennsylvania State Treasurer Stacy Garrity

Unclaimed property can include dormant bank accounts, uncashed checks, insurance policies, contents of forgotten safe deposit boxes and more. Most tangible unclaimed property comes from abandoned safety deposit boxes, police evidence rooms, colleges, nursing homes and can include things like jewelry, baseball cards, and other collectibles. State law requires businesses to report unclaimed property to Treasury after three years of dormancy.

Individuals can keep property from ending up at Treasury by:

  • Keeping banks informed of any address changes;
  • Communicating with banks at least once every three years;
  • Keeping up-to-date records of bank accounts, stocks, life insurance policies, safe deposit boxes, etc;
  • Letting a family member or trusted advisor know where financial records are kept; and
  • Depositing or cashing all checks as they are received.

More than one in ten Pennsylvanians is owed unclaimed property, and the average claim is worth about $1,600. To learn more about unclaimed property or to search Treasury’s database, visit

NOTE TO THE MEDIA: Photos related to this release are available on Google Drive.

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