Copy of U.S. Constitution Sold At Auction For More Than $43 Million

Copy of U.S. Constitution Sold At Auction For More Than $43 Million article feature image
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Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images. Pictured: A close-up of the first printing of the final text of the U.S. Constitution on display at Sotheby’s.

One of the 13 surviving copies of the U.S. Constitution, printed for delegates at the Constitutional Convention in 1787, sold Thursday night at auction house Sotheby’s for more than $43 million.

It is not known who won.

One of the bidders was believed to be a group called Constitution DAO, but the group announced on Twitter it did not win the bid. The final price was $43,173,000.

It is not clear why the group lost. It is believed that it raised more than $47 million in cryptocurrency, but the value of ether dropped five percent on Thursday, which might have resulted in them bowing out.

“While this wasn’t the outcome we hoped for, we still made history tonight with Constitution DAO,” the tweet read. “This is the largest crowdfund for a physical object that we are aware of.”

The group said it had 17,437 donors with a median donation size of $206.26. The donors now will be refunded.

The proceeds of the auction go to a foundation set up Dorothy Tapper Goldman, which is dedicated to furthering the understanding of democracy and how people can make a difference. Goldman’s late husband bought it 33 years ago for $165,000.

Sotheby’s had estimated that the document would sell for $15 million to $20 million.

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