A 1787 Brasher Doubloon, the finest of just seven known specimens, became the world’s most valuable gold coin after selling for a new record price of $9,360,000 as part of an offering of important U.S. coins by Heritage Auctions on Jan. 21.
The doubloon is the finest example of its kind, and this most recent sale marked just the third time the coin has been auctioned since 1848. Officially titled the 1787 New York-Style Brasher Doubloon, W-5840, NGC MS65*, it is known throughout numismatics and beyond as “The World’s Most Famous Coin.”
Brasher Doubloons have been popularized in detective novels and motion pictures, such as The High Window by Raymond Chandler, and the feature film The Brasher Doubloon (20th Century Fox, 1946). To the average American citizen, the Brasher Doubloon is the archetype of a rare and valuable coin and enjoys a lofty status in pop culture that is unapproached by any other coin.
Heritage noted that this example displays terrific eye appeal, the technical quality is the finest available, and the historic importance of this issue is profound.
Bidding by phone with the successful bidder from the moment the lot opened was Heritage Auctions’ President Greg Rohan.
According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the previous auction record for a gold coin was $7.59 million for a 1933 $20 Double Eagle, which was sold in 2002 in New York.
All photos courtesy Heritage Auctions. For more information and to view and participate in future coin and note auctions, visit www.ha.com.