Sotheby’s Auction of Rare Collectibles Breaks Records

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Some of the rarest items in the world, including the only privately owned double eagle coin, sold in less than 10 minutes during a Sotheby's auction of collectibles.

Records were broken at a recent Sotheby’s auction, which included the sale of the only existing One-Cent Magenta stamp, “Inverted Jennies” previously owned by Stuart Weitzman, and a 1933 “double eagle” gold piece.

According to Sotheby’s, the “Inverted Jennies” were bought by David M. Rubenstein. Rubenstein is a co-founder of the private-equity firm the Carlyle Group, and is no stranger to prized collectibles, as he previously snagged copies of the Magna Carta, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. 

The “Inverted Jenny,” the postage stamp, famously misprinted with an airplane upside down, broke the record for a stamp at a U.S. auction, selling at just below $5 million.

The double eagle is unique, in that this particular coin is the only double eagle that is privately owned. Almost 450,000 of the double eagle coins were minted and set to be destroyed, but 20 were stolen.

The daughter of a Philly coin dealer found some in a safety deposit box in the early 2000’s, but the government reclaimed their ownership, ultimately leaving Weitzman’s coin as the only 1933 version that can legally be sold.

The anonymous buyer of the “double eagle” gold coin paid 18.9 million. 

The One-Cent Magenta, originally from what is now Guyana, is the only one in the entire world, and it sold for 8.3 million.

These collectible items broke several records, including being sold in under 10 minutes at the auction. 

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