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Price of a coin

Started by Pabitra, January 31, 2013, 10:02:44 AM

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Alan Glasser

Hi, Pabitra. I did a bit of looking and didn't find a higher priced U.S. coin sale. This link is interesting however. By the way, the 1933 $20 gold "double eagles" are the cause of a BIG arguement between the owners and the U.S Government. They were never official released and as such..are government property..except several got out. I don't know the whole story...need to look it up but maybe it is explained in this story below.



Weren't officially used ... therefore government property indeed looks like the conclusion of the US judicial system. My guess is that in other jurisdictions, the outcome may well have been very different.

In most jurisdictions, property law is convoluted and shaped by precedent. Two (generalised) examples. In Dutch law, whoever can show the last documents of transfer is the owner, except if an item is bought at auction (there are some other, less important exceptions), which is accepted as legal transfer of ownership even if the seller was not the rightful owner (but you can still claim damages from the auctioneer.) I am not a lawyer, but I think that a testament or inventory of an inheritance made by a notary public would count as a valid transfer of property. After 100 years, I doubt the state would even bother to go to court.

In France, holding the item serves as prima facie evidence of property. It is up to claimants to show that the item is held illegally. This would have been impossible after so many years. The state would have had to show bad faith of the holder. I can't see how they could have, unless the holders had been bragging about how their ancestors were thieves and frauds.

It is up to Americans to shape their own legal system, but that doesn't mean others will follow them automatically in their conclusions.

An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.


The dispute between the US government and owners of 1933 Double Eagles has always mystified me in light of the fact that the 1913 Liberty Heads were manufactured illegally, yet the latter do not appear to have been the target of litigation by the US government.

Still, it will be interesting to see what this returns:

Estimates up to U$5,000,000, but who knows?
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