An incredibly valuable first edition Harry Potter book has just sold for more than $87,000 – and it was just moments away from being chucked into a family garage sale for less than a dollar.
Charlotte Rumsey was helping her mum Karen prepare for a garage sale at their UK home when she came across the hardback edition of the Philosopher’s Stone buried away in their house.
Without even thinking Charlotte threw it in the box of books selling for 50 pence (80 cents AU).
“Soon after, I just happened to see the Antiques Roadshow on TV. Someone had taken along some rare Harry Potter books and the experts said they could be worth 13,000 pounds,” Charlotte told the Hansons Auctioneers website.
“I thought maybe we might have a first edition and rang Mum to ask her to double-check our book. She took it out of the box and I began reading out the issue points that identify it as first edition.
“As she turned the pages to check each one, everything seemed to be exactly the same.”
It is just one of 500 copies published and includes two mistakes – first is the spelling of the word philosopher and the other is the repetition of ‘1 wand’ in the list of equipment for Harry’s first year.
Despite an expert confirming their book was indeed a genuine first edition, the family was initially reluctant to part ways with it.
After some deliberation they decided to “grab the opportunity with both hands” and their prized find went on to sell for 68,000 pounds ($87,780).