- A group of internet friends are on track to buy an extremely rare print of the US Constitution.
- ConstitutionDAO has raised $46 million in ether as of Thursday, according to its wallet.
- The document is estimated to sell for up to $20 million in a Sotheby’s auction Thursday evening.
An incredibly rare copy of the US Constitution is estimated to sell for up to $20 million when it hits the auction block later today, and a group of internet friends are pooling funds together in hopes of buying the document.
ConstitutionDAO is a decentralized autonomous organization that has so far raised more than 10,000 ether worth about $46 million in its bid to buy the document. The funds began to roll in on Sunday, and stood at just $3 million on Monday, according to its public wallet. (DAOs are internet communities that pull capital together and decide collectively how to invest it.)
The US Constitution up for auction at Sotheby’s this evening is an official first-edition printed copy of the document. It is one of just 13 remaining copies that survived a 500-print run in 1787, more than 230 years ago. The document is just one of two that remains in private hands, with all of the other copies owned by institutions.
If purchased by ConstitutionDAO, the group plans to immediately preserve and protect the document, and hopes to find a home for it at a venue that would allow the public to view it for free, such as a museum like the Smithsonian. But that decision will ultimately be left to a democratic vote by the people who donated to the project.
“The ConstitutionDAO will govern future decisions around destination, preservation, as well as plans for purchasing other historical artifacts,” its website says.
Those that contribute to the project receive governance tokens called “People,” which gives the holder the ability to vote for what direction future efforts of the project take. There is no expectation to profit off the project when donating to ConstitutionDAO.
Sotheby’s has estimated that the document will sell for $15 million to $20 million, so ConstitutionDAO is well on its way to purchase the document after hitting its original $20 million goal.
Late Wednesday, the group changed its stretch goal to $69,420,000, in reference to meme numbers popular with the crypto community. But it has since removed its fundraising goal and live updates of how much it raised, likely in an effort to win the upcoming bid at the lowest price possible.
One crypto user who contributed .02 ether to the project commented with their donation, “first generation immigrant, proud owner of the US constitution.”
If ConstitutionDAO succeeds in its mission, it wouldn’t be the first time a DAO has bought a rare item for millions of dollars. In October, PleasrDAO purchased a rare Wu-Tang Clan album made infamous by Martin Shkreli for $4 million from the US government.