Sunday, September 25, 2022

Discovering Oxford's Own "Pawn Star"

Suppose a person needs a few bucks to tide themselves over until the next paycheck? Or you’re looking for a gift for that special someone, but don’t want to spend a boatload?

Oxford Pawn Shop is located at 1350 North Lamar, Ste. 1
Oxford Pawn Shop is located at 1350 North Lamar, Ste. 1

Well, that’s where Oxford Pawn Shop owner W.A. Allgood says he can help in a pinch.
“There’s a need for a pawn shop because you can bring something in here or borrow money against the item,” Allgood said. “You can borrow $10 here, whereas, if you go to a bank, you probably can’t borrow less than $1500. So there’s a need for pawn shops.”
Allgood opened Oxford Pawn Shop twenty-eight years ago and, while it’s nothing like its famous counterpart on the History Channel, he says it is a very compelling and interesting business.
“We have something new everyday and each person that walks through the doors is a different situation,” Allgood said. “However, hopefully people realize a lot of what they see on TV is strictly Hollywood-hype. You don’t have a buddy on hand that knows something about everything.”
Allgood said that Oxford Pawn is regulated by the state and the state set the terms of their operation.
“They basically tell us what we can do and how we can do it,” he said. “Including, how much we can charge. There are laws that we have to abide by and it’s a very strictly-operated business.”
Oxford Pawn’s gun and ammo sales are one of their biggest sources of business, if not the primary. Allgood said they pawn a lot of guns each year.
“We handle a lot of hunting guns when it comes to pawns,” he said. “But we also deal in a lot of handguns and most of those are new. A lot of people think everything in a pawn shop is used, but that’s not the case. We also have new items.”
Hunting rifles and hand guns make up a large portion of Oxford Pawn Shop's business.
Hunting rifles and hand guns make up a large portion of Oxford Pawn Shop’s business.

Oxford Pawn is a licensed Federal Firearm dealer, so they can purchase any type of new firearm in a particular category. Tools are another big pawn item for the store.
Allgood said you can pawn something for thirty days and then either renew or pick up the item, but the Pawn Shop must hold it for 61 days before they can put it out for sale.
“That’s a state law,” he said. “If we buy something from you, instead of a pawn, we have to hold it 21 days. And when it’s a gun, that’s on a federal level and the person has to fill out a form called a 4473, which is basically a background check on the buyer. We call it in and [the government] approves, delays or denys the transaction. And if they do deny you, feel certain, you’re about to get a visit from the ATF.”
Allgood said they very seldom receive stolen merchandise. When items are pawned, another form is signed that reads the items belong to the individual doing the pawning and are free of debt or encumbrance.
“If someone pawns us something that is stolen, I promise they are going to jail,” he said. “I don’t put up with it and I will see to it that the person is prosecuted. Most of the problems we’ve ever had with stolen stuff are family-related.”
Allgood said he’s had his fair share of bizarre and strange experiences when it came to what people brought in to pawn.
“I had somebody wanting to pawn some snakes one time,” he said. “Needless to say, I did not take those. However, I did take some parakeets once, only because my kids were young then and I knew I’d have to take them home and my kids would be willing to take care of them.”
And while snakes and birds might seem strange items for people to bring in, Allgood said neither of those topped what one woman brought in to pawn.
W.A. Allgood, owner of Oxford Pawn Shop.
W.A. Allgood, owner of Oxford Pawn Shop.

“A lady wanting to sell her child is definitely the most bizarre thing I have ever had happen to me. It disturbed me for quite a long time afterwards,” Allgood said. “A young girl came in and tried to sell me a baby. She was very serious about it. There happened to be a local preacher in the store that day and I asked him what I should do. I was going to call the Department of Human Services immediately, but he advised me that she’d only deny it the minute they showed up.”
The day-to-day dealings at Oxford Pawn is generally not as exciting as Pawn Stars or Hardcore Pawn, but the occasional bit of drama does come through the front doors. Allgood’s goal is to help locals, neighbors and friends in a pinch.
Oxford Pawn Shop is located at 1350 North Lamar, Ste. 1 and is opened Monday-Friday, 9:a.m. – 5:00 p.m. and on Saturday 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
– Angela Rogalski, staff writer, HottyToddy.com, abbeangel@yahoo.com 

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