The L.A. Times has reported that a Beverly Hills man shelled out a whopping $2,585,000 for a penny.
The collectible item is apparently one of the first pennies ever crafted. Named “The Birch Cent” after its creator Robert Birch, the penny was made in 1792 and was an experimental creation after the founding of the U.S. Mint. Pretty cool, but we don’t know if we’d pay millions for it.
The buyer, Kevin Lipton, owns whole-sale business and apparently also purchased a 1792 quarter dollar for $2,232,500 from the same auction. That’s almost $5,000,000 on two coins originally supposed to be worth 26 cents.
This totally beats the one time in college where we convinced some stoner dude that a penny super-glued onto a quarter was a rare 26-cent piece and sold it to him for $1 dollar. Congratulations Lipton, you now own the title of most money paid for 26 cents.
The last notable and insane purchase of a penny came in 2010, when a Lincoln cent (the wonderful penny that occupies the bottom of our pockets and the nooks and crannies of our cars today) from World War II was discovered to be accidentally struck in bronze as opposed to the nearly worthless alternative, zinc-coated steel. It sold for $1,700,000 to a collector.