The 1787 Brasher gold coin sale was organized by Blanchard and Co., a New Orleans-based coin and precious metals company, although the identities of the buyer and seller were not disclosed. The coin, which was minted by goldsmith and neighbor to George Washington, Ephraim Brasher (1744-1797), contains 26.66 grams of gold. Brasher was a well-respected gold and silver metal smith who also assured the quality of foreign coinage in circulation.
The coin Brasher minted, which has been called the “Mona Lisa” of gold coins or the “Holy Grail” was worth $15.00 when minted, and the gold would now be worth approximately $1,500.00. But the gold value alone does not tell the spectacular story of this gold dubloon and why it is worth so much. During the years before 1787, Americans still used foreign currency to buy, sell and trade.
The Brasher dubloon is seen as the first American-made gold coin that held a denomination in American dollars. Therefore, since the U.S. Mint did not begin striking coins until 1790s, it is the truly first “American” coin. In the early days of America, citizens still mostly used foreign currency to buy sell and trade. The Brasher dubloon last traded hands in 2004 for $3 million dollars. The current sale for 7.4 million dollars more than doubles its last sale price.
The Brasher gold coin is called a dubloon because its weight is similar to a Spanish gold dubloon, which was in common use in colonial America. Still, there is one gold coin that is worth even more, the 1933 Double Eagle, which sold for $7.5 million in 2002.
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