‘Wizard Of Oz’ Iconic Piece Of Memorabilia Found After Being Stolen 13 Years Ago

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Thirteen years after one of the most iconic pieces of movie memorabilia in history was stolen from a Minnesota museum, a pair of ruby slippers once worn by Judy Garland in the film The Wizard of Oz have been found, as reported by CNN.

On Tuesday afternoon, authorities will reveal further details of the shoes’ recovery at the FBI Minneapolis headquarters, according to CNN.

It remains unclear if anyone will be charged with the crime.

The missing shoes were one of four known pairs that Garland wore as Dorothy in the iconic 1939 film. The shoes disappeared in August 2005 from the Judy Garland Museum in the actress’s hometown of Grand Rapids, Minnesota.

“The biggest thing that ever happened to our museum was getting the slippers stolen,” museum co-founder Jon Miner said to KQDS in 2015, as reported by CNN. “We were literally crying.”

The shoes have an estimated value of $2 million to $3 million.

CNN noted that journalist Rhys Thomas stated in the 2016 documentary The Slippers that “Whoever has them, illicitly, has their hands full with them.”

“One way or another, over the course of time, the shoes will out you,” said Thomas in the film, which documented the impact the shoes had on pop culture.

The slippers were on loan to the museum from memorabilia collector Michael Shaw for Grand Rapids’ annual Wizard of Oz festival in 2005, according to CNN.

Shaw revealed in the documentary The Slippers that he bought the shoes from a Hollywood costume designer.

CNN reported that Kent Warner found several pairs of this important piece of Hollywood history on a dusty shelf, sold one at an MGM Studios auction in 1970 and kept the rest for himself, selling off each pair to collectors.

Shaw reportedly rejected the museum’s offer to store them in a vault at the close of each day because he didn’t want the shoes handled, as they were delicate.

“I was assured that the museum had security,” Shaw said in The Slippers.

Staff at the Garland museum found the shoes missing from their glass case, which was reportedly smashed.

Museum co-founder Miner was accused at the time of the burglary being an inside job, a claim he vehemently denied.

“We’re the ones that want to find them because they were entrusted to us,” Miner said, as reported by CNN. “Our people, they love the museum. They wouldn’t have done that. These are honest people,” Kelsch said.

In 2015, it was alleged that the slippers were thrown in a nearby lake. Divers would scour Tioga Mine Pit Lake but came up empty in their search.

Another pair has been on display at Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in Washington, DC, since 1979.

The film The Wizard of Oz will celebrate the 80th anniversary of its release on August 25, 2019.