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Still Waters

'Fake' coin turns out to be worth millions

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Still Waters

In 1854, at the height of the California Gold Rush, the San Francisco Mint produced less than 300 special $5 coins. Only three were known to survive into modern times. Until today, that is. Now there are four.

The owner of the fourth coin, who wishes to remain anonymous, really was convinced that the coin was fake. Coin dealers thought it was a forgery too, insisting that there’s no way he could have had a rare 1854 piece like that. But he brought it to the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation (NGC), a Florida-based company that does third-party authentication of coins, and its experts confirmed this rare treasure was the real deal.


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