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California couple finds $10m in gold coins buried in cans under backyard tree

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A California couple found $10m in gold coins while walking their dog on their rural property in Northern California, and the middle-aged husband and wife who live near Sacramento are still in disbelief. The gold coins, which are worth $10 million, were buried in metal cans in the shadow of an old tree "in eight metal cans," reported CNN on Feb. 25, 2014.

In the spring of 2013, the Northern California husband and wife were walking their dog on their property when they discovered something shiny under a tree. When they began to dig, they discovered eight metal cans (unlike CNN, some sources say that there were six rusty cans) holding 1,427 gold coins that dated from 1847 to 1894. The mint-condition coins were stored in chronological order in $5, $10 and $20 denominations indicating that whoever had buried them likely had to have access to new coins.

The California couple who found the $10m in gold coins has chosen to remain anonymous because the husband and wife fear a new kind of California gold rush with modern-day prospectors scavenging their property with metal detectors.

What is known about the once-in-a lifetime treasure is that the gold coins are now known as the "Saddle Ridge Hoard" because it was discovered near a hill that the husband and wife call Saddle Ridge. The couple has lived for several years on the rural property in north-central California east of Sacramento. The discovery of gold at Sutter’s Mill, about 50 miles northeast of Sacramento, set off the California Gold Rush of 1848.

The California couple finding the $10m in gold coins consider themselves to be extremely lucky. The coins have been authenticated, and while the combined face value of the treasure is $27,000, experts believe that the coins will be worth at least $10 million or even more on the market. The married pair, who is still in disbelief about their good fortune, plans to eventually sell most of the gold coins on Amazon’s “Collectibles” site. However, before selling most of the treasure, it will be available for viewing at the American Numismatic Association's 2014 National Money Show in Atlanta, which opens on Thursday. The husband and wife who found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow want to use the money to pay off some bills, donate some to charities – but most of all keep their already happy lifestyle together with their dog.

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