Rare 1913 nickel fetches over $3.1M at auction

  • Posted: Friday, April 26, 2013 12:09 p.m.
    UPDATED: Friday, April 26, 2013 12:10 p.m.
An authentic 1913 Liberty Head nickel that was hidden in a Virginia closet for 41 years after its owners were mistakenly told it was a fake. The nickel is one of only five known and was sold Thursday April 25, 2013 at an auction conducted by Heritage Auctions in the Chicago suburb of Schaumburg, Ill., for $3,172,500.  (AP PHOTO)
An authentic 1913 Liberty Head nickel that was hidden in a Virginia closet for 41 years after its owners were mistakenly told it was a fake. The nickel is one of only five known and was sold Thursday April 25, 2013 at an auction conducted by Heritage Auctions in the Chicago suburb of Schaumburg, Ill., for $3,172,500. (AP PHOTO)

SCHAUMBURG, Ill. (AP) — A rare century-old U.S. nickel that was once mistakenly declared a fake has sold at auction for more than $3.1 million.

The 1913 Liberty Head nickel is one of only five known to exist. But it’s the coin’s back story that adds to its cachet: It was surreptitiously and illegally cast, discovered in a car wreck that killed its owner, declared a fake, forgotten in a closet for decades then declared the real deal.


It was offered for sale by four Virginia siblings at a rare coin and currency auction in the Chicago suburb of Schaumburg on Thursday, and sold for well over the expected $2.5 million.

The winning bidders were two men from Lexington, Ky., and Panama City, Fla., who bought the coin in partnership.

Notice about comments:

Salisburypost.com is pleased to offer readers the ability to comment on stories. We expect our readers to engage in lively, yet civil discourse. Salisburypost.com cannot promise that readers will not occasionally find offensive or inaccurate comments posted in the comments area. Responsibility for the statements posted lies with the person submitting the comment, not Salisburypost.com. If you find a comment that is objectionable, please click "report abuse" and we will review it for possible removal. Please be reminded, however, that in accordance with our Terms of Use and federal law, we are under no obligation to remove any third party comments posted on our website. Full terms and conditions can be read here.

Do not post the following:

  • Potentially libelous statements or damaging innuendo.
  • Obscene, explicit, or racist language.
  • Personal attacks, insults or threats.
  • The use of another person's real name to disguise your identity.
  • Comments unrelated to the story.