Rusty Goe was in the news elsewhere this week due to publicity over his recent coin purchase. -Editor In my right hand I held a pair of dimes. Small change. Hard to think what they'd buy today.
In my left a small silver coin stamped "twenty cents". As legal tender it's the equivalent of the dimes. When it was minted it was worth slightly less than $4 dollars in today's money and might have bought a modest meal. Today it's worth a half million dollars, perhaps more.
A half million is what Reno coin collector and dealer Rusty Goe paid for the coin at auction recently, his second try at an elusive and expensive prize.
What makes this small silver coin worth that amount? Two words: rarity and competition.
Ten thousand of these coins were struck at the Carson City mint in 1876. Unpopular with American consumers the denomination was discontinued and most were melted down. Goe figures there are maybe 18 out there. Their rarity the obvious reason for the value and in the world of coin collecting scoring coins like this are like finding the Holy Grail. But Goe says it's much more than that.
"Once you learn the history of how they were introduced into our monetary system. And then you hear the back story of how the coins came down to us over the last 133 year, you begin to see how important they are. These are relics from the past. These are like small, little antiques."
To read the complete article, see: Reno Man Buys 20-Cent Coin For Half-Million (www.kolotv.com/home/headlines/46990917.html)
Wayne Homren, Editor
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