1851 $50 Assay Office ingot to auction for $250,000 at Spink?

An 1851 $50 United States Assay Office "ingot" is to headline Spink's Numismatic Collector's Series auction in New York on June 18 with a $150,000-250,000 estimate.

The series entered production during the California gold rush, as there was no infrastructure set up to convert the raw gold into coinage.

Assay Office ingot
The ingot was minted by the United States Assay Office in California in 1851

Spink explained: "The act authored 'ingots' of $50 to be struck, consisting of refined gold '�Ǫ.of uniform fineness�Ǫ.'

"Legends were to include the words 'LIBERTY' and 'UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.'

"These "ingots" would circulate like Federal coins, but their metallurgic composition differed from the gold coins that were issued by the official U. S. Mints."

Moffat & Company produced them under the guidance of Augustus Humbert, who was appointed federal assayer prior to the opening of the San Francisco Branch Mint in 1854.

The record for the series was set back in 2008, when the only known reeded edge example sold for $460,000.

A $16 ingot by Moffat & Company made $199,750 at Heritage Auctions on June 8.

A 1909 Hudson-Fulton gold medal is valued at $20,000-40,000.

The lot (one of only 10 gold examples extant) was issued to commemorate the earliest incidence of steam navigation on the Hudson River in 1807 and depicts engineer Robert Fulton, who is credited with inventing the first viable steamboat.

We have a range of rare coins available.

You can sign up here for our fun and informative free newsletter.

Featured products

Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Sale price£399
In stock
Fidel Castro signed certificateFidel Castro Signed Certificate
Fidel Castro signed certificate
Sale price£2,995
In stock
King Henry VIII Autographed DocumentKing Henry VIII Autographed Document
King Henry VIII Autographed Document
Sale price£55,000
In stock