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Numismatists understand that they are not simply paying hundreds of thousands of dollars (or even millions of dollars!) for a piece of metal. Instead, they are buying and investing in a piece of history. If you’re interested in building your own coin collection, you may be curious to know which coins hold the most value. While it’s not likely you will have one of these rare coins hiding in your dresser drawer or attic, it’s still fascinating to learn about the rarest and most valuable coins in the world. These coins earned their value for several reasons — from controversial minting to marketing stunts — but their true worth lies in their rich histories. Here’s everything you need to know about the seven rarest coins.

1933 Saint Gaudens Double Eagle

When the Saint Gaudens Double Eagle coin was first struck in 1933, it wasn’t considered rare in any way, shape, or form, as 400,000 specimens were made at the same time. However, before the coins were circulated, President Franklin Roosevelt issued an Executive Order that made it illegal for U.S. citizens to own gold coins. The coins were melted down in response to the order, but a few escaped the mint’s vaults. As one of the rarest coins, the 1933 Double Eagle coin sold for $18.9 million in 2021. 

1787 Brasher Doubloon

The rare 1787 Brasher Gold Doubloon was created by a goldsmith. Ephraim Brasher minted his own gold coin when the New York legislature denied his request for new copper coins. There are only a few variants of Brasher’s coins left. One of the rarest coins has the EB hallmark branded on the eagle’s breast. This coin sold for $7.4 million in 2011.

1343 Edward III Florin

The Gold Florin was created in 1344 by King Edward III with the intention of using it as legal tender throughout Europe. However, the coinage was withdrawn from circulation after a few months. Now, only three of these British coins exist, making it one of the rarest coins in the world. One of the remaining coins has been valued at $6.8 million.

1794 Flowing Hair Silver Dollar

The 1794 Flowing Hair Silver Dollar is considered among the most valuable coins in the country, as it is believed the U.S. Mint produced these coins as the first silver dollar. This coin got its name from the profile of Lady Liberty depicted on its front. Lady Liberty has long, flowing hair in the image. The American eagle appears on the reverse side of the coin.

Less than 1,800 of these coins were produced, and a little more than a hundred remain, making it one of the rarest and most expensive coins sold. One Flowing Hair Silver Dollar sold for $6.6 million in August 2021.

1804 Silver Dollar, Class I

Unlike its name would suggest, the 1804 Silver Dollar was minted in 1834. It was created as a gift for Asian rulers during Edmund Roberts’ diplomatic efforts. Today, the coin is referred to as the “King of U.S. Coins” because there are only fifteen specimens of this coin divided into three different classes. The Class I division is considered the most valuable. Once owned by the Sultan of Muscat, one such coin sold for $4.1 million in 1999.

1913 Liberty Head Nickel

The 1913 Liberty Head Nickel got its spot on the list of most valuable coins in the United States because it was created without being approved by the U.S. Mint, and only five of these nickels made it through production. Today, this coinage is highly sought after by coin collectors around the world. One of the most expensive coins sold for $4.56 million in 2018.

2007 $1 Million Canadian Gold Maple Leaf

The Royal Canadian Mint produced the first coin with a $1 million face value in 2007. The coin weighs about 220 pounds (100 kilograms) and features an image of Queen Elizabeth II on one side and a trio of maple leaves on the other. Only six of these coins were produced in an effort to promote the mint’s one-ounce Gold Maple Leaf coins. The Guinness Book of World Records dubbed the coin as the world’s largest gold coin in 2007. One of these coins was sold at an auction for 3.27 million euros (approximately $4 million) in 2010.

Make Money With Your Old Coins

While most coins in your penny jar or collection will not help you become a multi-millionaire, you may be surprised that some are worth more than their face value. If you’re wondering how to sell your coins for cash, stop by The Jewelers & Loan Co. in Quincy, MA. We’ll help you value your coin collection and can offer cash on the same day if you decide to sell. If you have any questions about the selling process, don’t hesitate to reach out to our old coin buyer today!