Many corporations, while possibly no longer listed anywhere as an active company under the name on the certificate, may have merged with another company or simply changed their corporate name, and may still be operating and financially successful today. Conversely, many corporations have gone bankrupt or been dissolved for various reasons. In either case, there are several procedures you can follow to obtain information as to whether that old stock certificate still has value.
Information Needed for Research:
1. Company Name (Company that issued the stock)
2. Date of Issuance (Date stock certificate was issued)
3. State of Incorporation (Incorporated under the laws of...(state name))
4. Additional useful information - Stock certificate number and number of shares issued
Where to Research:
The Secretary of State for the state where the corporation is incorporated may have records which indicate whether the corporation merged or liquidated, as well as the corporation's last certificate of condition filed with the state.
Refer to the Nevada Secretary of State's Office (SOS), Commercial Recordings Division at:
- 775-684-5708 for questions on researching older/newer certificates,
- The Commercial Recordings page on the SOS website at http://nvsos.gov/sos where you can perform a search . Look under "Online Services" and select the "Business Entity Search" link. Their online database can be searched by Corporation Name, Resident Agent, Corporate Officer, or File Number (NOTE: Check with SOS on the date range of their on-line records)
- Older stock certificates may not be in the online database. Please refer to the "Frequently Asked Questions" and "Contact Information" links on the Commercial Recordings page for additional information.
You may also try a local stockbroker who may have, or be able to acquire, information pertaining to the disposition of the corporation, and the present value, if any, of its stock.
The clerk of the Federal District Court in the state of incorporation may have records indicating that the corporation filed a petition of bankruptcy, or that some other legal action was taken that affected the condition of the corporation.
For Older Stock Certificates:
Start your research from the year of issue in the appropriate book (see listing that follows). Investigate going forward year by year to see if the company that originally issued them is still in existence (they sometimes change names and/or owners).
The following list of mining books have some information on mines, mining operations, and mining companies. Check with your local library or university for availability. In Nevada, the University of Nevada Reno's DeLaMare Library which is located in the Mackay Mines building has the largest collection of the Copper Handbook, Mines Handbook, and Mines Register.
Listing of Reference Books:
- Copper Handbook (1900-1914)
- The Mines Handbook (1916-1931)
- Mines Register (1937-1971)
- World Mines Register (1975-1982)
- American Mines Handbook, Southam Magazine & Information Group (1989-present)
- Canadian Mines Handbook, Southam Magazine & Information Group (1931-present)
The Clark County Heritage Museum is developing a collection of Nevada mining stock certificates. The museum will accept donations (tax-deductible in most cases). Donations can be made to:
Clark County Heritage Museum
1830 S. Boulder Highway
Henderson, NV 89015