1793 penny sells for $2.35 million at Florida auction

Published on Friday, 9 January 2015 15:09 - Written by

DALLAS (AP) — A 1793 U.S. one-cent piece has sold at auction for $2.35 million.

Dallas-based Heritage Auctions said the penny, known as a "chain cent," sold at auction Wednesday in Orlando, Florida.

Heritage President Greg Rohan says the copper cent is rare because the design on the back — a chain with 13 linking rings symbolizing the unity of the original 13 colonies — was changed soon after production started in March 1793. He says critics at the time felt the chain evoked an image of slavery, so the design was changed and a wreath replaced the chain.

Rohan says the buyer was a coin collector who wished to remain anonymous.

The coin was purchased for only $76 the first time it appeared in an auction back in 1879.

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