You might have seen this article Monday. Until this week, a stash of valuable coins known as Eisenhower Silver Dollars, worth a million bucks or more, had been sitting in a vault at a bank in Helena for four decades, the property of an anonymous owner. This week, the owner sold the coins to a New Hampshire buyer, and the buyer disclosed the transaction to the press. But according to the buyer, the seller wished to remain anonymous.
I have a speculative theory that the seller of these coins might have been none other than the GOP gubernatorial candidate Neil Livingstone.
Why? Here is an exerpt from a 1986 Washington Post article about Livingstone:
The son of a dentist in Helena, Mont., Livingstone remembers his childhood with great affection. At 15, his mother took him to his first coin club meeting and Livingstone quickly saw the possibilities of selling rare coins. He made a killing on the estate of a coin collector whose son didn’t understand its value.
Poring over the collection, Livingstone found a 1797 uncirculated $10 gold piece and “rolls and rolls of rare silver dollars. I wrote $20,000 worth of checks that night and all I had was like 500 bucks. I knew I had to cover those checks by morning . . . I woke up people in the middle of the night and said, ‘I’ve got a deal for you.’ By morning I had covered my checks and had probably about $200,000 to the good.” He immediately bought the Ferrari, but says he quickly ran through all his money on cars and partying.
This could be a desperate act on the part of Livingstone to revive his campaign with a much-needed cash infusion. A million bucks has been tossed around as the minimum that Livingstone would need to spend to make a dent in Rick Hill. But of course, Livingstone couldn’t make Eisenhower Coin transaction public, for fear of the utter humiliation of it. I mean, who sells a coin collection as a way to finance a run for Governor?
So that’s my theory anyway. Admittedly, it is based on speculation. But the timing of this whole thing is very interesting to me.