Rare 1792 Silver Cent Sells for $1.15 Million

This 1792 Silver Center cent, one of fewer than 20 examples known, brought $1.15 million including the 15 percent buyer’s fee during Heritage Auctions’ April 18 to 20 sale in Schaumburg, Ill. Images courtesy of HeritageAuctions.com

A rare 1792 Silver Center Cent recently sold at auction for $1.15 million dollars.

The coin, an experimental prototype called “Judd 1,” is more than 200 years old, made with a copper ring that surrounds a small plug of silver, which was added to make the cent heavier. The silver plug was added to make the copper coin meet weight standards as established by the U.S. Mint.

The obverse features Lady Liberty facing right, with her hair blowing in the wind. The reverse has a wreath of laurel branches around the words “one cent.” The U.S. Mint was established in 1792, so the Silver Center Cent is from the first year of coins produced under the new U.S. Mint.

The auction took place last Thursday (4-19) at the Renaissance Schaumberg Convention Center, just outside of Chicago, Illinois. Beverly Hills, California’s Kevin Lipton bought the coin on behalf of a group of unnamed investors. Lipton’s winning bid was for a flat $1 million, but the investors must also pay the auction house’s 15-percent commission, bringing the total to $1.15 million dollars.

Todd Imhof, vice president of Heritage Auctions, explains the coin in question was never actually put into circulation, and that there are only 14 examples of this coin that are known to exist. “This particular coin was carefully preserved from owner-to-owner over the past 220 years, and remains in mint state condition,” explains Imhof. “It’s been illustrated in several prominent numismatic reference books.”

Another thing that makes this coin unique is that it doesn’t have “In God We Trust”  printed on the reverse, like so many other coins. Instead, the coin says “Liberty Parent of Science & Industry.”

“At the time, industry and science reflected an enlightenment mindset,” says Imhof. “People believed freedom of thought and industrial growth would bind and unify the new country, not religion or God.”

This “million-dollar coin” is not alone in the price it fetched, nor is it the most expensive coin—ABC News reports that a similar coin sold more than a year ago for close to $3 million. Nevertheless, it’s still a very rare occurrence. There have been fewer than 30 coins that have surpassed the $1 million park at auction.

Source: The Inquisitr

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