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Brasher Doubloon Sells for $7.4 Million...
Ian Russell on Mon, Dec 12, 2011 05:30:13 AM
Even as the spot price of gold and silver have eased off a little, we still see strength in the rare coin market.  Another example of this is the $7.4 million sale of the Brasher Doubloon that was reported today.  I remember seeing this coin at the Sacramento ANA earlier in the year.

As to why it's a $15 coin, David McCarthy, numismatic researcher for The Brasher Bulletin, explains it the best: "The coinage standards of weight and value established by the Bank of New York in 1784 indicate that Doubloons weighing 17 pennyweights (about ¾ of an ounce) were valued at $15. Brasher's Doubloons weigh 17 pennyweights, and would therefore have been $15 coins."

Ian Russell
GreatCollections Coin Auctions

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NEW ORLEANS (AP) — An exceedingly rare 1787 gold Brasher doubloon has been sold for $7.4 million, one of the highest prices ever paid for a gold coin.

Blanchard and Co., the New Orleans-based coin and precious metals company that brokered the deal, said the doubloon was purchased by a Wall Street investment firm. Identities of the buyer and seller were not disclosed.

Minted by Ephraim Brasher, a goldsmith and neighbor of George Washington, the coin contains 26.66 grams of gold — slightly less than an ounce. Worth about $15 when it was minted, the gold value today would be more than $1,500.

The Brasher doubloon is considered the first American-made gold coin denominated in dollars; the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia didn't begin striking coins until the 1790s.