A gold coin minted in the United States in 1933 sold at auction for nearly twenty million dollars, the highest price ever paid for a coin.
The coin is called a “double eagle” and was sold at an auction organized by Sotheby’s in New York.
It was the last gold coin to be produced for circulation in the United States, but it was never circulated as then-President Franklin Roosevelt withdrew America from the gold standard in an attempt to lift the country out of depression.
Most of the coins were subsequently destroyed, and later declared illegal possession. That currency became the only example that could be owned by the private sector, as it was owned for a period of time by the late King Farouk of Egypt, and was later seized in a secret intelligence operation in New York in 1996.
A five-year legal struggle ensued, which ended by allowing the currency to be privately owned.
In 2002, it was sold at an auction by shoe designer and collector, Stuart Weitzman, for $7.59 million.
Therefore, the coin sold Tuesday for $19.51 million, by Stuart Weitzman, is the only one legally minted in 1933.
Sotheby’s called the coin “one of the most desirable in the world”, and it did not disappoint as it surpassed an estimated pre-sale price of $10 million to $15 million.
It also broke the record for the most expensive coin in the world, which was set by the silver dollar “Floing Hair” minted in 1794 and sold for 10 million dollars in 2013.
The double eagle coin bears the image of a woman symbolizing freedom on one side, and an American eagle on the other.