This section is from the book "Money And Investments", by Montgomery Rollins. Also available from Amazon: Money and Investments.
When a check is lost it is simply necessary to notify the bank against which it is drawn; giving a description of the check, generally the number it bears; the amount for which it was drawn; the date, and to whom payable; stating that the check has been lost and requesting that no payment be made should the same be presented.
Suppose that John Smith finds a check, which is payable to " bearer," "cash," or "currency;" that is, good in the hands of John Smith, or any one else, without indorsement. The person who lost this check has. already notified the bank to " stop payment." John Smith takes it to some person whom he knows and gets the cash; that is, receives the money upon it. This person accepts it on the supposition that it came honestly into the hands of John Smith, and then presents it to the bank against which it was drawn for payment and finds that payment has been stopped. He cannot collect the money, even although the check has come into his hands honestly, for the law expects each person who accepts a check to satisfy himself as to whether or not it properly belongs to the person presenting the same.
All that is said above in regard to checks applies with equal force to notes and all papers of similar nature.