One of the biggest gold nuggets ever discovered in Alaska will be put up for sale in Dallas in December. It is expected to go for up to $1million.
Gold miner Barry Clay first discovered the Alaska Centennial Gold Nugget in Alaska, U.S., in 1998. Its size is incredible at the size of a softball and weighs 294.10 troy ounces, or more than 20 pounds, Daily Mail reported.
In 1998, Barry Clay was moving dirt with his bulldozer along the Swift Creek Mine shores when he came across a giant gold nugget. Clay buried the gold nugget by a tree while considering what to do with it before bringing it into town and selling it to a consigner.
As the website Geology Page noted in 2020, Clay “finally took it to town for further study, [where] it was determined he had discovered the largest nugget ever found in Alaska, and the second-largest nugget ever found in the western hemisphere behind the Cortez nugget found in Mexico.”
The vendor bought the nugget from Clay more than two decades ago. Heritage Auctions in Dallas will auction off the historic nugget on Dec. 8.
A Heritage spokesperson said: “The Alaska Centennial Gold Nugget is the largest gold nugget ever found in the State of Alaska.
“It was discovered in 1998 along Swift Creek near the town of Ruby, Alaska by Barry Clay, who unearthed this seminal discovery and instantly made history.
“The Alaska Centennial Nugget was sold to a private collector, where it has remained in his collection until now. This offering represents a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”
Craig Kissick, director of nature and science at Heritage Auctions, said the bidding for the Centennial Nugget would start at $675,000 and expect it to sell for $800,000 to $1.2 million.
“The majority of gold mined is refined,” Kissick added. “A one-ounce gold nugget is even more rare than a five-carat diamond.”
Two native gold crystals unearthed in the Venezuelan jungle in the 1980s are also up for sale and expected to earn $300,000 and $600,000 respectively.
Meanwhile, a unique “frozen geyser of gold” discovered at the Eagle’s Nest mine in California has been valued at nearly $200,000, while a crystallized gold leaf presumed to be from Mexico has been estimated at $150,000.