Pennies auctioned off for $A11.9 million
A penny saved is not
necessarily just a penny earned. One man's
collection of rare American cents has turned
into a $US10.7 million ($A11.9 million) auction
The collection of 301 cents featured some of the
rarest and earliest examples of the American
penny, including a cent that was minted for two
weeks in 1793 but was abandoned because Congress
thought Lady Liberty looked frightened.
That coin and a 1794 cent with tiny stars added
to prevent counterfeiters each raised $US632,500
($A702,075), according to the Dallas-based
auction house Heritage Auction Galleries, which
held the sale in Long Beach on Friday night.
Heritage Auction president Greg Rohan said the
auction was the biggest ever for a penny
collection, with hundreds of bidders vying for
the coins. Presale estimates valued the
collection at about $US7 million ($A7.8
"It was a fabulous night," Rohan said. "Every
major coin collector of American cents was
either there in person, bidding online or on the
The coins came from the collection of Burbank
resident Walter Husak, the owner of an
aerospace-part manufacturing company. Husak
became interested in collecting at age 13, while
visiting his grandparents who paid him in old
coins for helping with chores.
There were 168 successful bidders and the
auction gallery got 15 per cent of the total.
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