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Rare 1822 Coin Sets World-Record Price for United States Mint Gold Coins

An 1822 Capped Bust Half Eagle Graded AU50 by Professional Coin Grading Service Sells for $8.4 Million in Stack’s Bowers Galleries Las Vegas Auction

An 1822 Capped Bust Half Eagle graded AU50 by Professional Coin Grading Service hammered as the world’s most valuable gold coin struck by the United States Mint. The rare gold coin, sold by Stack’s Bowers Galleries in Las Vegas alongside a PCGS coin show on March 25, 2021, took $8,400,000 (including a 20% buyer’s premium) and is the only example available for private ownership.

1822 Capped Bust Half Eagle Gold Coin

“We are thrilled to see this coin cross the auction block to set a world-record price,” says PCGS President Brett Charville. “We graded this coin AU50 when it was owned by the late, great collector D. Brent Pogue, and this specimen was formerly owned by the legendary Virgil Brand and Louis Eliasberg. The 1822 Capped Bust Half Eagle has been offered for sale only a few times in the last century, and therefore it’s no surprise this unique piece just became the most valuable gold coin ever made by the United States Mint.”

Despite a mintage of 17,796 specimens, the 1822 Half Eagle offers only three known survivors. Two are permanently housed at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., leaving just this one specimen for which collectors can vie. Being a necessary coin for any collector wanting a complete collection of half eagles, this 1822 trophy coin has long achieved outstanding auction prices. When it previously sold in 1982, it realized $687,500 – then an astronomical sum when no coin had yet crossed the seven-figure threshold at auction.

Among other prestigious PCGS-graded coins to exchange hands alongside the 1822 Capped Bust Half Eagle at the Stack’s Bowers Galleries auction in Las Vegas are a PCGS MS66 1797 Draped Bust Half Dollar, Small Eagle, considered one of the rarest of all half dollars and taking $1,680,000. Several other rarities took six figures, including a 1796 PCGS MS66RB Liberty Cap Half Cent that fetched $288,000 and an 1845-O PCGS MS63 Liberty Head Quarter Eagle that sold for $117,000.