Unclaimed Baggage inducted into the Alabama Tourism Hall of Fame

Tourism Director Lee Sentell, CEO Bryan Owens and Matt Owens pose after Unclaimed Baggage was inducted into the Alabama Tourism Hall of Fame. PHOTO BY JAMIE MARTIN

As it celebrates its 50th year in business, Unclaimed Baggage has been named to the Alabama Tourism Hall of Fame.

For 50 years, they have been the anchor for tourism in north Alabama,” said Alabama Tourism Director Lee Sentell. (Go to 8:56 to watch the presentation to Unclaimed Baggage).

With some 7,000 new items being stocked every day – jewelry, clothing, electronics and more – this unique shopping experience brings one million people each year from throughout the world to Scottsboro, Alabama.

In 1970, founder Doyle Owens bought his first unclaimed baggage from Trailways Bus Lines and quickly resold its contents, thus Unclaimed Baggage was born. With decades of airline partnerships, continued family ownership and crowds flocking for its famous sales, this award-winning Alabama business has grown tremendously.


50 Years
This internationally and nationally recognized business and now Alabama Tourism Hall of Fame member hopes to soon resume its semicentennial festivities, which have been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Stay tuned for details regarding the 50 Years 50 States Road Tour, which will bring games, contests, merchandise and more to select locations across the country.

Now Online
Don’t have time to stop by the storefront? In June, Unclaimed Baggage launched an online store so that you can also shop for popular, vintage and whacky pieces right at home. At the Alabama Tourism Hall of Fame induction, Matt Owens spoke about the company’s first-ever e-commerce site as a way to reach even more customers. Browse categories from shoes and books to luxe and unusual finds online.

Reclaimed for Good
Unclaimed Baggage Center’s purpose isn’t limited to selling. “It is our mission to ‘reclaim for good’ what was once unclaimed,” Chief Executive Officer Bryan Owen said. The Reclaimed for Good™ foundation partners with dozens of local, national and global charities to find service opportunities and repurpose and distribute non-retail merchandise to those in need.

Story by Katie Brown


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Originally posted at 3:45 p.m. August 23, 2020