SS Central America ingot sells for $891,250 at World's Fair


2015-06-26 12:57:03


SS Central America ingot sells for $891,250 at World's Fair

A gold ingot from the SS Central America wreck led the Rarities Night on August 9

A Harris Marchand & Co gold ingot recovered from the wreckage of the SS Central America has sold with strong results, topping the Rarities Night at the 2012 ANA World's Fair of Money on August 9.

SS Central America Gold Ingot World's FairAnother ingot from the wreck was once the world'smost valuable currency

The ingot was described as an American numismatic treasure by the auction house, as a unique example weighing 174.04 ounces of extraordinarily fine gold. Attributed to the Marysville, California office of Harris and Marchand (whose main office was in Sacramento), it sold for $891,250 as top lot in the sale.

It originates from the SS Central America, a sidewheel steamer wrecked during a hurricane off the southern part of Virginia in 1857. The ship was carrying over $100m in coins and ingots from the California Gold Rush, which was only recovered in the 1980s and made available following an intense legal battle in 1996.

Of the 500 ingots recovered from the ship, the most valuableis an80 pound example that sold for $8m in 2001 to become the world's most valuable piece of currency. Bidders will have the chance to own another ingot from the wreckage in Bonhams' September 2 sale, when a 40.56 ounce bar from Kellogg & Humbert will sell with a $120,000-140,000 estimate.

Following the ingot was a stunning uncirculated 1793 Sheldon-3 chain cent, which sold for an impressive $747,500. Known as the Leaning R variety owing to the cant of the R in LIBERTY, the coin originates from the first year of coinage at the Philadelphia Mint and was only issued for one year before being replaced with 1793-dated wreath cents and liberty cap cents. Graded NGC MS-66 and boasting a lustrous deep golden brown colouration, it was taken from the Thomas Cleneay Collection.

At Paul Fraser Collectibles, we stock a stunning range of world-class rare coins. This William IV proof crown is a previously unknown variety from 1831 and provides a unique and alluring addition to any collection.

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