1882 gold certificate to bring $1M-plus

A rare U.S. $100 gold certificate is expected to bring more than $1 million at the World’s Fair of Money hosted by the American Numismatic Association this month in Chicago.

The 1882-dated “triple-signed” gold certificate will be offered by Stack’s Bowers – one of two official auctioneers for the popular annual show – on Aug. 16, when it’s expected to cross the block for between $800,000 US and $1.2 million US ($1 million-$1.5 million Cdn.).

One of only three in existence and the only example in private hands, the note features a portrait of Missouri Senator Thomas Hart Benton, who was known as “Old Bullion,” on its face and an eagle on its back.

The 1882 gold certificates (back shown) were the first examples to see widespread use.


By 1879, U.S. gold coins and paper money were exchangeable at par in general commerce, according to auctioneers, who added the 1882 gold certificates were the first examples to see “wide use.”

This example last traded publicly for $822,500 US in a January 2014 auction.

“It is no less rare now than it was then,” said auctioneers. “However, demand for ultra-rarities such as this has only increased.”

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