GAFFNEY, S.C. -- Authorities say the sudden appearance of old $100 bills in Gaffney led to the arrest of two air conditioning workers.

Police say 87-year-old Lois Brown told the workers that her husband hid $100,000 in the basement just before he died in 2003. Brown told the workers that if they discovered the cash, she would give them a big reward.

Investigators say 50-year-old Joey Reed and 47-year-old Elie Spencer found the money during the September 2010 work, but didn’t tell Brown. Instead they started buying a used car and a big-screen TV with bills so old they didn’t have the security thread or off-center Benjamin Franklin portrait.

The men are charged with grand larceny. Their lawyers didn’t return messages. Brown has sued their employer to try to get her money back.