COLOMA, Calif. - In the foothills community where the Gold Rush began, the talk has turned to an anonymous couple's startling discovery of $10 million worth of gold coins buried on their property.
"Living out here, you're always keeping your eyes open hoping you're going to be one of these people who finds something like that," blacksmith Eve Oswald said while working in one of the historic state park buildings.
Kagin's, the Tiburon brokerage that announced what it called the most valuable gold hoard ever unearthed in North America, said the couple identified only as "John and Mary" last spring found more than 1,400 coins minted in San Francisco and buried in rusting cans on their Gold Country property.
The identity of the couple and exact location of their property is a matter of intense speculation among local precious metals and coin dealers.
"No one has a clue," said Chris Lowman, owner of Placerville Coin & Bullion, who expressed disappointment that the couple chose a Bay Area brokerage to handle the sale of the coins on Amazon.
"I would have loved for the coins to come in here so that I could have brokered them," he said. "It would have been a blast just to see them."
Lowman speculated the person who buried the coins was a successful merchant or miner who didn't trust the banks and died before he could tell anyone about the cache.