Having been a coin dealer for over 25 years means that you see a few things over time. The Saint Gaudens $20.00 gold coins pictured here had been buried in the ground. They were sold to us be a little old lady in Arizona. They were so encrusted with dirt that it took some time to clean them up for re-sale. We see coins and coin collections that have been buried every 2-3 years. The difference here was that this was the first time we encountered certified coins that had been buried.

We were planning of visiting a coin seller in Texas as part of a larger trip. This fellow had about $4,000 face value of Lincoln Wheat Cents and a small quantity of silver Dollars, one of which was a decent 93-S.

The problem was that he had read somewhere that copper ancient coins were sometimes preserved in olive oil. So he had places the pennies in various plastic containers and immersed them with olive oil. We weren’t sure what we might do with the pennies but we figured we could look with an open mind.

Unfortunately we didn’t see him. A few days before our scheduled visit he decided that the silver dollars weren’t shiny enough, so he used a metal polish on them to clean them up. He said he paid special attention to the 1893-S as he knew that was a valuable coin.

This is a story that we could repeat several times as it has happened on more than one occasion.

I was speaking with a client in Texas who wanted to sell a quantity of gold coins. We had gone over pricing and our client was ready to, as they say “pull the trigger”. We started to look at prospective dates for a meeting for the following week, however, at that point the seller seemed to get cold feet. I inquired as to what was holding him back. He then confided in me that he had literally buried his coins on the edge of his property. As it so happened, his neighbor sometimes parked a trailer over the property line encompassing the burial site.

He then told me that his neighbor never parks it there for long and it would probably be clear at some point soon, and that he would retrieve them then. Our Buyer did meet with him, and purchased the unharmed coins. He even got to see the burial spot. Honest Injuin.