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California couple find pots of gold

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Many news outlets reported yesterday, Feb. 25, 2014, that a nice middle-aged California couple had found $10 million in gold coins buried on their property last year.

I don’t like to say once-in-a-lifetime for anything, but you don’t get an opportunity to handle this kind of material, a treasure like this, ever,” said veteran numismatist Don Kagin, who is representing the finders. “It’s like they found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

In an interview, the couple going by the names of John and Mary, said they have walked the same spot on their Sierra Nevada property many times over the years. Years ago they noticed an old tree growing on a hill with an empty rusty can that the tree had grown around. At the time they thought that the can might have been a container for someone to put flowers in at a grave site.

They had also noticed an unusual angular rock up the hill that sparked their curiosity and got them digging around. But it wasn't until their find that they realized that these were markers. And if you "started at the rock and walked 10 paces toward the North Star you wound up smack in the middle of the coins"!

After unearthing the treasure, the couple contacted a numismatist, David McCarthy, who evaluated the coins and informed them of the significance of their discovery.

We all dream about discovering buried treasure; seeing the real thing in person – piles of gold coins encrusted in dirt and rust – the experience was just indescribable. Never in my wildest dreams would I imagine coins coming out of the ground in the kind of condition that I saw in front of me. Many pieces were finer than anything known in major collections or museums.

What did they do with the coins immediately after finding them? They dug a hole under the wood pile and got a slab of green board to cover it, put the coins in plastic bags, then put them in a box inside an old ice chest and buried them and didn't even tell close family or friend. Saying ~

the old-timers had it right – it’s safer than in a bank!

And what do they plan on doing with the coins now that they know their value?

We’d like to help other people with some of this money. There are people in our community who are hungry and don’t have enough to eat. We’ll also donate to the arts and other overlooked causes. In a way it has been good to have time between finding the coins and being able to sell them in order to prepare and adjust. It’s given us an opportunity to think about how to give back.

Source, Hoard interview @ kaginsinc.com

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