U.S. Flowing Hair silver dollar tops $10 million

A United States coin set a world record on Jan. 24 by topping $10 million at an auction. The event occurred during Stack’s Bowers Galleries’ late January sale of the Cardinal collection, part of the firm’s New York Americana sale. The 1794 Flowing Hair U.S. silver dollar, described as “superb gem” and the finest known, set a new world record of $10,016,875, the highest price ever paid for a single coin. The total collection reached $27 million.

“To be a part of this historical occasion is nothing short of amazing,” said Chris Napolitano, president of Stack’s Bowers Galleries. “Collectors competed with great fervour and energy, resulting in outstanding overall prices realized. The price of the gem 1794 dollar went up and up into the millions, with everyone in the audience on the edge of their seats until at last there was just one bidder remaining. At $10,016,875, a world-record price for any coin had been set. The previous record was $7,590,020 for a 1933 Double Eagle, set in 2002.

While it is well known that the value of the American dollar has depreciated over the years, here is a dollar that has increased in value beyond the wildest of anyone’s dreams.” One of the greatest American numismatic landmarks, the 1794 Flowing Hair silver dollar is the finest known example of its kind, graded Specimen-66 by the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS) and the Certified Acceptance Corporation (CAC). A close study of its characteristics suggests that it may well be the first specimen struck of the first year of the silver dollar, and was carefully preserved for posterity.

Other sale highlights included a certified 1792 silver half-disme in NGC MS-68 that sold for $1,145,625, a 1793 Chain AMERICA large cent in PCGS/CAC MS-65 BN that fetched $998,750, and a 1794 Liberty Cap Cent with the Head of 1793 in PCGS/CAC MS-64 BN that soared to $881,250. “Thanks to Martin Logies, chief architect of the Cardinal collection, we were able to bring one of the most significant collections in all of numismatics to auction,” Napolitano said. “The event helped set a new standard of excellence in numismatics, and pays homage to the history, legacy and lore of American coin collecting.” For a complete list of items sold and prices realized from the sale, go to stacksbowers.com.

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