Edmond Coin Expert Helps Family Find A Nickel Worth Millions
EDMOND, Oklahoma - An Edmond coin collector helped a family find a nickel worth more than $3 million.
The rare 1913 "Liberty Nickel" appeared worthless to the family. It sat in a box inside a closet for more than 40 years.
Only five of the coins were ever made, and in the early 1940s the rare coins were separated. They made their way across the country trading hands through different collectors, but for decades, the fifth coin was thought to be lost.
“Here's a case where a family thought they had nothing, and I got to tell them they have millions,” said professional numismatist, Paul Montgomery.
In 2003 Paul Montgomery, put out a $1 million reward for the only 1913 Liberty Nickel never found.
“It really was just a gimmicky way for me to promote an auction I was putting on,” said Montgomery. “I knew where the other four were.”
Paul said for many years it was thought that the fifth coin was lost in a fiery car accident in 1962 killing the owner, George Walton, also a well-known coin collector.
“We get inundated with calls, thousands and thousands of calls,” said Montgomery.
Then one day, Paul got a call from heirs of the Walton family who agreed to privately meet with him. But he had no idea this was the real deal.
“They pulled that coin out, and they handed it to me, and all the blood rushed from my face,” said Montgomery.
For more than 40 years, no one knew it even existed. Even after the day Paul told the family the nickel was worth millions, the family held on to their fortune for another 10 years before heading to an auction in 2013.
“This is a family that was so cool that they wanted the coin more than they wanted the money,” said Montgomery.
Montgomery said two of the Liberty Nickels sit in a museum and the other three are privately owned.