Thieves made off with $4 million in rare coins last week. This is the second year running that the Florida International Numismatist Convention has been hit. One might imagine that these collectors and dealers would be a little more careful. This year, a handful of masked robbers stole the coins at knifepoint. Last year they merely broke into the cars in a parking lot and made off with $450,000 in loot.
The recent robbery took place in the valet parking line at the Peabody Hotel. Some of the most valuable coins taken include coins like this one, dating from 1843 and President Tyler. David Nishimimura points out that perhaps the dealers should have used an armored car service. Once again, authorities do not know how the objects will be sold, as they are extremely rare, and would probably be quite difficult to get rid of. The art isn’t in the theft, it’s in the selling. There remains a healthy debate about whether these kind of coins rise to the level of cultural property. Though they are valuable, they are not particularly rare.