For many years, this simple $29 painting had been covering a hole in the wall in an Indiana home. One day, the owner of the house realized the value of the work when the family played Masterpiece, a board game about art. It was the third most valuable painting by Martin Johnson Heade, and it was called Magnolias on Gold Velvet Cloth.
In 1999, experts from the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston confirmed its origins and offered a good price to the owner. The painting was still in its original frame and in perfect condition. The seller agreed to accept the $1.25 million offer, and the museum has had Magnolias on display since then.