These Are Some Of The Rarest, Most Expensive Coins In The World

Coins have been around for centuries and the older the coin, the harder it is to find. Some people turn to the hobby of collecting coins to get in touch with history, but several rare coins have become extremely valuable and are highly desirable for that reason. If you have a coin collection, then keep reading to find out if any of them are worth a lot of money.

The Flowing Hair Dollar Is Part Of U.S. History

The coin dealer Lawrence Stack presents a so called 'Flowing Hair' silver dollar from 1794
Chris Melzer/picture alliance via Getty Images
Chris Melzer/picture alliance via Getty Images

The most expensive coin in the world is the Flowing Hair dollar. This was the first dollar coin that was issued by the United States government and was minted in 1794. Only a few years before the Flowing Hair dollar was released, Alexander Hamilton urged Congress to pass a joint resolution for the establishment of a national mint.

According to USA Coin Book, one of these coins was auctioned for $10,016,875 in 2013. Only 1,758 of the Flowing Hair dollars were created and it’s unknown how many are still out there.

Very Few 1933 Double Eagles Were Rescued

Tim Banks from the Dublin Mint office holding the 1933 Double Eagle
Julien Behal/PA Images via Getty Images
Julien Behal/PA Images via Getty Images

The last batch of double eagle coins was created in 1933, the same year that President Franklin D. Roosevelt stopped the coinage of gold and even made it illegal to own gold. Wealthy Gorilla states that while 445,500 of them were minted, they never went into circulation and all but two were ordered to be melted.

Now, those two coins have become extremely valuable. It’s also believed that several more were rescued before they were melted. The most recent auction of a 1933 double eagle coin brought in $7.59 million. It is scheduled to be auctioned again in June of 2021.

The Eagle Had Several Designs

eagle coin with both sides showing
National Numismatic Collection, National Museum of American History/Wikimedia Commons
National Numismatic Collection, National Museum of American History/Wikimedia Commons

The gold coin in the photo is called an eagle and it had a denomination of $10 per coin. The United States minted it from 1792 to 1933. “Eagles” were used as a unit for coin circulation and other units are called the mill, cent, dime, and dollar.

According to Professional Coin Grading Services, a $10 Proof Eagle was sold at auction for an estimated $5,280,000 in January 2021. There have been several designs of the eagle coin, but the most valuable is the Turban Head with the eagle on the reverse.

The 1913 Liberty Head Nickel Is Super Rare

1913 liberty head nickel against a black background
Scott Olson/Getty Images
Scott Olson/Getty Images

One of the rarest coins ever produced is the 1913 Liberty Head nickel. Only five of them are still in existence. According to Coin Resource, the Liberty Head design was the last to appear on the nickel before the Buffalo version was created in February 1913.

A 1913 Liberty Head nickel sold for $3,428,950 in 2013. Coin Trackers estimates that one in certified mint state (MS+) would be worth about $4,408,650, but could be upwards of five million dollars.

The 1804 Draped Bust Silver Dollar Wasn’t Made In 1804

bust dollar class i coin
National Numismatic Collection, National Museum of American History/Wikimedia Commons
National Numismatic Collection, National Museum of American History/Wikimedia Commons

Although this coin goes by the name 1804 Draped Bust Silver Dollar, it wasn’t made in 1804. The coin was actually minted starting at least in the 1830s.

The coin comes in three separate classes, with the first class being worth about $4,140,000. There are numerous ways to tell the classes apart such as their designs and the spacing of the letters. According to USA Coin Book, only eight of these coins are still in existence today.

The 1884 Trade Dollar Was Only A Proof Coin

trade dollar coin showing both sides with Liberty and eagle
National Numismatic Collection, National Museum of American History/Wikimedia Commons
National Numismatic Collection, National Museum of American History/Wikimedia Commons

According to USA Coin Book, 1884 Trade Silver Dollars were only used as proof coins to prepare for the 1885 coin of the same name. It was reported that there are only 10 of these in the world today.

Barrons states that a rare 1884 Proof Trade dollar is now worth up to two million dollars. The front of the coin features a left-facing seated Lady Liberty who is extending her hand with an olive branch and a bald eagle is on the reverse side.

Wow! A Gold Canadian Maple Leaf Worth A Million Dollars

The Royal Canadian Mint's (RCM) 100-kg 9
KARIM SAHIB/AFP via Getty Images
KARIM SAHIB/AFP via Getty Images

The $1 million Gold Maple Leaf coin is one of the most expensive coins in the world. First coined in 2007, it was meant to promote the Royal Canadian Mint’s new line of 99.999% pure one Troy ounce Gold Maple leaf bullion coins.

To date, only five of these have been purchased by coin collectors, with the most expensive one fetching $4,020,000 in June 2010. It was sold by Dorotheum Auction House in Vienna, Austria.

The Edward III Florin Coin Is Extremely Old

A rare Edward III Gold Double Florin against a sky background
Ian Nicholson/Getty Images
Ian Nicholson/Getty Images

This coin goes by many names including double florin, double leopard, and Edward III florin. It dates back to 1344 when King Edward III wanted to produce Europe’s first gold coin.

Since this is one of the oldest coins in history, it comes with a hefty price. According to Wealthy Gorilla, one Edward III florin is valued at a little under seven million dollars. It’s estimated that there are only three surviving coins left., further increasing their value.

A Laguna Beach Man Bought The Brasher Doubloon For Millions

A Laguna man, Steven Contursi, holds the 1787 Brasher Doubloon
Don Kelsen/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images
Don Kelsen/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

One of the hardest coins to find is the 1787 Brasher Doubloon. The backstory of this coin began when a goldsmith and silversmith named Ephraim Brasher submitted a petition to the State of New York to make copper coins.

When the petition was denied, he decided to make his own. Wealthy Gorilla states that most of the coins were made in copper, but a special few were made with gold. One of the unique gold Brasher Doubloons was sold to collector Steven L. Contursi, who then sold it to an undisclosed Wall Street investment firm for nearly $7.4 million.

A Silver Barber Dime Was Found In A Strange Location

silver barber dime from 1894 with both sides showing
Professional Coin Grading Service/Wikimedia Commons
Professional Coin Grading Service/Wikimedia Commons

According to USA Coin Book, the 1894 Silver Barber dime is one of the rarest and most highly prized coins for collectors in the United States. Only 24 of the proof coins were made during that year and now there are just nine left.

In 1957, someone found one of the nine Silver Barber dimes in an old box at Gimbels Department Store and bought it for a measly $2.40. Now, someone looking to buy one of the coins would have to pay at least $1 million, probably much more.

Thomas Jefferson And Alexander Hamilton Had A Spat Over The Silver Center Cent

silver center cent from 1792 with front facing side of a person looking to the side
Scott Olson/Getty Images
Scott Olson/Getty Images

The Silver center cent was minted in 1792 and there are only 12 originals left. It’s worth noting that the coin was one of the first American coins to use more than one metal.

U.S. Patterns states that Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton argued about the materials coins should be made from, but the U.S. Mint’s chief coiner, Henry Voigt, came up with a solution of copper planchet. The highest the Silver center cent went for was $1.15 million at a 2012 auction.

The Umayyad Gold Dinar Coin Fetched More Than $6 Million

A member of staff at Morton & Eden holds an extremely rare early Islamic gold coin
Victoria Jones/PA Images via Getty Images
Victoria Jones/PA Images via Getty Images

It would be tough for anyone to get their hands on an Umayyad gold dinar. These Islamic medieval gold coins date back to between 696 and 697 CE.

According to Coin World, this coin was struck from gold mined at a source owned by a caliph and the text roughly translates to “Mine of the Commander of the Faithful.” It’s also the earliest Islamic coin to mention a location in modern-day Saudi Arabia. The coin was last auctioned in April of 2011 for a high price of $6,029,400.

The Decadrachm Holds A Few Records

Silver Syracusan decadrachm depicting winged Victory on quadriga
DeAgostini/Getty Images
DeAgostini/Getty Images

One factor that many coin enthusiasts look for when collecting is the coin’s age. The decadrachm is an ancient Greek silver coin that dates back to between 409 and 406 BC.

Coin World states that the silver decadrachm of Agrigentum hails from a seaside city in Sicily. It also happens to hold a few records. This coin is the most valuable non-U.S. coin, Greek coin, and Greek silver coin. It was last sold in October 2012 for $2,918,000.

Fans Of James Bond Will Want This Coin

Royal Mint designer Laura Clancy, polishing a brass replica of a unique 7 kilo gold James Bond coin
Yui Mok/PA Images via Getty Images
Yui Mok/PA Images via Getty Images

In March of 2020, a Royal Mint designer named Laura Clancy designed a James Bond coin to celebrate the franchise’s 25th film release. The coin set a record for being the largest, with the highest face value, to be produced in the Royal Mint’s 1,100-year history.

The coin weighs about 15.4 pounds and is worth a little under two thousand dollars. There are three separate designs including the Aston Martin DB5, the classic Bond car, and one featuring the “Wet Nellie” futuristic submarine car.

Jacob’s Redeemer Is The Most Expensive German Coin

The coin 'Jakobsloeser' can be seen in a display case
Sebastian Gollnow/picture alliance via Getty Images
Sebastian Gollnow/picture alliance via Getty Images

The Jakobsloeser, or Jacob’s Redeemer, gold coin hails from Germany and is almost 400-years-old. Friedrich Ulrich, Duke of Braunschweig and Lüneburg, had it minted from pure gold that came from the mines in the Harz Mountains.

The design of the coin includes a man standing in flowers under the sun called St. James the Elder. He is wearing a hat and carrying a pilgrim’s staff and a book. According to London Coin Galleries, the Jakobsloeser was auctioned off in London in 2015 for approximately $1.2 million.

The 1822 Half Eagle Will Be Up For Auction Soon

An employee poses with
Niklas Halle’n/AFP via Getty Images
Niklas Halle’n/AFP via Getty Images

One coin that attracted all eyes at Sotheby’s auction house in 2015 was the 1822 Half Eagle, also known as the Five Dollar Gold Piece. USA Coin Book states that 17,796 of them were originally produced, but only three survived.

It’s estimated that the 1822 Half Eagle coin is worth around five million dollars. Art Daily reported that it will be up for auction in March 2021 at Stack’s Bowers Galleries in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The 1703 Queen Anne Coin Was A Product Of Jubilation

coin auctioneers holds a maginifying glass over a 1703 Queen Anne 5 Guineas coin
Carl De Souza/AFP via Getty Images
Carl De Souza/AFP via Getty Images

There’s a lot of history behind the 1703 Queen Anne gold 5-guinea coin. According to Coin World, the War of Spanish Succession broke out around the time Anne assumed the throne.

As the war ended, the English discovered that Spanish ships were carrying treasures from the New World. In order to celebrate their win, the Royal Mint created the 1703 Queen Anne gold-5 guinea coin with the gold that was captured from Vigo Bay. One of the coins brought in approximately $1,080,000 in 2019.

1870-S Seated Liberty Dollar Went Off The Record

1870 seated liberty dollar reverse side
Lost Dutchman Rare Coins/Wikimedia Commons
Lost Dutchman Rare Coins/Wikimedia Commons

The 1870-S Seated Liberty dollar was the last silver coin to be produced before the Coinage Act of 1873. This banned the use of pure silver for coins made under the Mint of the United States.

USA Coin Book says that only 15 of them are still in existence and it was one of the few cases where the U.S. Mint had no official record of ever producing it. If someone has an 1870-S Seated Liberty dollar in uncirculated (MS+) mint condition, it could be worth more than $2 million.

A Buffalo Nickel With Two Dates Is Valuable

nickel
collectorworld/Pinterest
collectorworld/Pinterest

Buffalo nickels, which are copper-nickel five-cent pieces, were produced from 1913 to 1938 before being replaced by the Jefferson nickel.

The 1918 Buffalo Nickel is a rare and valuable coin due to a minting error. The Denver Mint stamped the 1918 date right over the 1917 date, a mistake that’s very easy to notice. USA Coin Book states that one of these coins in uncirculated (MS+) mint condition could be worth $37,880 to $62,837.

The Kansas State Quarter Has An Amusing Error

kansas
eBay
eBay

Every state in America has its own design on the back of quarters. Although the individual quarters aren’t that rare, there are some that are worth more than 25 cents.

In 2005, there was a grease spill during the minting of the Kansas state quarter. Instead of “In God We Trust,” the inscription read “In God We Rust.” Little Things says most of these quarters usually go for a small amount that’s around five dollars, but they can go as high as $100.