Troubled Harrisburg bets on unusual auction

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NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- It's unlikely that a Revolutionary War rifle will save Harrisburg, Pa., but it could help.

The financially troubled capital of Pennsylvania is hosting an auction of artifacts this summer in hopes of raising enough money to close the gap between the city's revenue and operating costs.

The loot is the end result of a failed plan to open several new museums in the city after it made substantial acquisitions of art and artifacts.

Former Mayor Stephen Reed, who served from 1981 to 2009, hoped new museums would spur tourism and economic growth in this town of just under 50,000 residents. But while one Civil War museum was built, institutes devoted to sports history, African-American history and the Wild West that were planned never got off the ground....

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