Rare golden Lego listed for just $14.95 at Pennsylvania Goodwill store fetches an ENORMOUS amount at auction

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Written By Maya Cantina
  • A rare Lego piece was discovered inside a Goodwill shop in DuBois, Pennsylvania
  • Workers realized The Kanohi Hau mask was part of Lego’s Bionicle collection
  • Made of 14-karat gold, the mask was manufactured in 2001 as one of 30 pieces 
  • While it was initially listed for $14.95, it ended up selling for $18,101 at auction

A rare Lego piece found at a Goodwill store has been purchased for almost $20,000 in an online auction. 

The Bionicle Golden Kanohi Hau mask, manufactured in 2001, was found by employees inside a branch of the non-profit warehouse store in DuBois, Pennsylvania. 

Weighing 26.14 grams, the 14-karat gold Lego mask and was one of 30 pieces of its kind made at the time. 

The mask had been listed at a base price of just $14.95 at Shop Goodwill but following its discovery, the rare item was previously bid for at a whopping $33,000. 

The Bionicle Golden Kanohi Hau mask, manufactured in 2001, was found by employees inside a branch of the non-profit warehouse store in DuBois, Pennsylvania

Weighing 26.14 grams, the 14-karat gold Lego mask and was one of 30 pieces of its kind made at the time

Weighing 26.14 grams, the 14-karat gold Lego mask and was one of 30 pieces of its kind made at the time

The mask had been listed at a base price of just $14.95 at Shop Goodwill but following its discovery, the rare item was previously bid for at a whopping $33,000

The mask had been listed at a base price of just $14.95 at Shop Goodwill but following its discovery, the rare item was previously bid for at a whopping $33,000

Chad Smith, Goodwill’s vice president of e-commerce and technology told WTAJ: ‘There’s 30 of the gold ones. They do make some silver ones and some platinum ones.

‘We’ve been talking about it all week. I really haven’t even had a chance to think about it, but it’s pretty amazing. 

‘It just shows you never know what you’re going to find on shopgoodwill.com.’

Some of the 30 pieces were gifted to LEGO employees and the rest were awarded through a contest in 2001. 

The mask is a part of Lego’s Bionicle collection and according to the toy-manufacturing company, the collection has inspired ‘a large number of interconnected media, including books, movies, TV series, comics, video games, and other licensed products’ between 2001 and line’s original end in 2010. 

Some of the 30 pieces were gifted to LEGO employees and the rest were awarded through a contest in 2001

Some of the 30 pieces were gifted to LEGO employees and the rest were awarded through a contest in 2001

The mask is a part of Lego's Bionicle collection and according to the toy-manufacturing company, the collection has inspired 'a large number of interconnected media, including books, movies, TV series, comics, video games, and other licensed products' between 2001 and line's original end in 2010

 The mask is a part of Lego’s Bionicle collection and according to the toy-manufacturing company, the collection has inspired ‘a large number of interconnected media, including books, movies, TV series, comics, video games, and other licensed products’ between 2001 and line’s original end in 2010

But despite its massive popularity, the mask went unrecognized by the workers at the Goodwill store

But despite its massive popularity, the mask went unrecognized by the workers at the Goodwill store

‘A combination of the words ‘biological chronicle,’ the BIONICLE line featured characters that were a combination of both mechanical and organic elements. The line proved to be a cultural phenomenon, enriched by a long-running story about the Matoran universe that reached far beyond the toys themselves,’ as described by LEGO. 

But despite its massive popularity, the mask went unrecognized by the workers at the Goodwill store. 

Jessica Illuzzi, Goodwill Industries of North Central Pennsylvania Social Media & PR Coordinator said: ‘We didn’t know what we had when we found it. It came in a box full of random jewelry from the State College store. So it had already been processed through donations there.

‘I think it’s really cool that there’s so few of them, but it’s also kind of cool to find out the research behind it. And then the final step is to find the right collector to take that really once it.’

This discovery comes two months after a Virginia woman’s casual vase shopping at her local Goodwill led her to unknowingly find one of the rarest Italian pieces of art. 

Jessica Vincent, 43, was scouring her local Goodwill when a 13-inch Murano glass vase wrapped in burgundy and green brushstrokes caught her eye. 

She suspected there was something special about it and made a purchase for $3.99.

Jessica Vincent, 43, was scouring her local Goodwill when she found a 13-inch Murano glass vase wrapped in burgundy and green brushstrokes and bought it for $3.99

Jessica Vincent, 43, was scouring her local Goodwill when she found a 13-inch Murano glass vase wrapped in burgundy and green brushstrokes and bought it for $3.99

The piece was estimated to sell for $30,000¿50,000 when it went on auction on December 13 but instead went for $107,100

The piece was estimated to sell for $30,000–50,000 when it went on auction on December 13 but instead went for $107,100

‘It was so unusual. It had such quality. I knew it was a good piece of glass with the mark on the bottom,’ she said. ‘I knew it was coming home with me.’ 

After a little research once she got home, Vincent was shocked to learn the piece was a 1940s design by influential Venetian architect Carlo Scarpa, part of the Pennellate series he designed for Venini, a century-old glass workshop on the isle of Murano. 

In an effort to learn more, Murano uploaded a picture of the vase to a Facebook group and grew even more excited by the responses. 

Members rushed to help her identify the rare item – some even began offering money to buy it. 

One member even offered her $10,000 for the vase, but she declined; others suggested contacting the Wright’s Auction House in New York.

The piece was estimated to fetch between $30,000–50,000 when it went on auction on December 13 but instead sold for $107,100. 

In July 2023, a Kentucky man hit gold after he discovered over 700 rare golden dollars buried in his farm in what experts have called the ‘Great Kentucky Hoard.’

One of the coins in the collection - a 1863 $20 Gold Liberty - is pictured. The piece usually commands a six figure sum at auction

One of the coins in the collection – a 1863 $20 Gold Liberty – is pictured. The piece usually commands a six figure sum at auction

The unidentified man filmed himself digging up the loot- all minted between 1840 and 1863 - as he exclaimed: 'This is the most insane thing ever.' Pictured: the full collection

The unidentified man filmed himself digging up the loot- all minted between 1840 and 1863 – as he exclaimed: ‘This is the most insane thing ever.’ Pictured: the full collection

The unidentified individual filmed himself digging up the loot- all minted between 1840 and 1863 – as he exclaimed: ‘This is the most insane thing ever.’

One of the coins discovered – an 1863 $20 Gold Liberty – could fetch up to six figures at auction, experts from GovMint said. The collection boasts 18 of the ultra-rare pieces.

It means if every one of them commands at least $100,000, the owner could be in for a $1.8 million payday. And that doesn’t account for the hundreds of other rare coins in the collection.

Archeologists speculate that the ‘treasure’ belonged to wealthy Kentuckians in the 1860s who were known to bury huge sums of money to protect it from a Confederate raid during the American Civil war.

The coins were verified by the Numismatic Guaranty Co. (NGC) who graded them as being in ‘extremely fine to mint state condition.’

It is unclear exactly where the land is located but it reportedly belong to the man who dug them up, according to Live Science.

Experts estimated that 95 percent of the hoard is made up of gold dollars – including $1 Gold Indians, $10 Gold Libertys and $20 Gold Libertys. 

The coins are believed to be linked to the Civil War when many people hoarded their money due to the rise in outlaws, bootleggers and gangsters. 

As of now the identity of the person who bought the Bionicle Golden Kanohi Hau mask remains unknown. 

ᴀʀᴛɪᴄʟᴇ ꜱᴏᴜʀᴄᴇ

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