In 1829, Christopher Bechtler Sr. migrated to the United States from Germany with his family. He opened up a watchmaker store in Philadelphia with some success. Meanwhile, the Carolina Gold Rush, the first gold rush in the United States, followed the discovery of a large gold nugget in North Carolina in 1799. This created a series of findings in North Carolina that lasted all the way up to the 1840s. In order to take advantage of this, Bechtler and his family operated a private mint from 1831 to 1850s. He was able to produce more than a million gold coins in his private mint.
For the last few years, automakers have been using palladium instead of platinum in their exhaust systems as a catalytic converter because of the cheaper price point. However, the price of palladium has dramatically changed in the last few months.
On June 14th, 1838, a boiler explosion caused the Pulaski Steamship to sink approximately 30 miles off the coast of North Carolina. Two-thirds of the passengers and crew on-board were lost as a result of this disaster.
During the 1980s, the South African Gold Krugerrand and the Canadian Gold Maple Leaf were extremely popular coins in the United States. In 1984, over $600 million worth of Krugerrands were marketed in the United States. However, people began to react to the racial tensions in South Africa and sales plummeted. Eventually, President Reagan banned the Krugerrands as a way of taking an economic stand against the South African government. This crippled the South African mint as half of their sales were derived from the United States.
In 1947, Don Lutes Jr. bought lunch from his high school cafeteria and noticed something strange about his change. One of the pennies he received had a copper tint to it. Normally, this would be fine for most pennies, however, the date on this penny was 1943. Lutes Jr. knew that pennies from that date were always made of steel. This was due to the Military's needs during World War II.