The recent story of a mysterious Nevada recluse’s gold stash has reached a new chapter. On February 26, 2013 a portion of the hoard brought in over $3.5 million at auction. It was the allure of the mystery that attracted some bidders to the auction held in Carson City, Nev. For others it was the sheer value of an unknown collection and its original collector. The collector’s name was Walter Samaszko Jr. who was found dead in his modest ranch-style home last year.
Regardless of the different reasons for attending the auction, those who did attend could sense the tremendous value of the treasure trove on display for bidding. The treasure hoard was protected by numerous armed guards, at the entrance, along the hallway, and in the room where the coins were being held. Five bidders diligently inspected the 11 lots of gold being displayed in plastic sleeves, tubes, and felt jewelry display boxes in the heavily guarded room before the bidding would began.
By the time all of the sales were final, one bidder had secured nine of the 11 lots for sale. Alan Rowe of Northern Nevada Coin spent $617,000 from his own company and another $2 million on behalf of the Illinois-based Rare Coin Company of America Inc. It was the uniqueness of the gold that drew his interest he was quoted.
The auction was only for the bullion coins, items that are not necessarily rare, just expensive because they consist of gold. The bidders were bidding on an ounce of pure gold pure gold by weight. In total, around 150 pounds of gold was auctioned off to the highest bidder. About $800,000 of the profits will go to various fees and estate taxes. The rest of the profits will go to a substitute teacher in San Rafael, California, who is a first cousin and the sole heir of Walter Samaszko Jr.
There is the possibility of a second auction for the larger portion of this mysterious hoard, which is comprised of rare coins and not bullion coins. Because of the coins rarity, it is expected that they should fetch even higher prices. Nobody really knows how the collection originally began, or why Samaszko never sold any of his coins. In fact, no one really knew anything about him even though he had lived in the same neighborhood for decades. Weeks passed before authorities even discovered he had died in his modest Carson City home due to heart problems.
When cleanup crews arrived, they made the startling discovery of the 69-year old man’s vast collection of thousands of gold coins worth millions of dollars stashed in old ammunition boxes in his garage.