‘Buy Bitcoin’ Sign Held at Janet Yellen’s 2017 Speech Sells for $1M

A piece of notebook paper featuring the phrase “Buy Bitcoin,” famously seen in the background during a broadcast featuring then-United States Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen in 2017, has been sold for 16 BTC, equivalent to approximately $1.027 million.

The auction, held at PubKey, a Bitcoin-themed bar in New York City, was organized and facilitated by the auction house Scarce.City.

Iconic “Buy Bitcoin” Sign Sold in Auction

The highest bidder, known pseudonymously as “Squirrekkywrath,” acquired the sign in a week-long auction. The auction was organized by Christian Langalis, also known as the “Bitcoin Sign Guy,” who posted it on the auction platform Scarce.City and attended the event himself.

Scarce.City noted that the transaction set a record amount for the platform. After Scarce City’s 15% fee deduction, Langalis is expected to receive approximately $875,000, equivalent to 13.6 BTC.

The iconic “Buy Bitcoin” sign on a ye­llow legal pad symbolized Bitcoin’s arrival in the global financial landscape­. This physical artifact is one of the few wide­ly recognized symbols of Bitcoin, given its primarily digital nature­. The auctioned notepad also include­s Langalis’ original notes and sketches of the­ sign from that historic day.

At the time of the famous incident, Langalis was reportedly a 22-year-old intern at the Cato Institute. The funds raised from the auction will support Langalis’ new venture, Tirrel Corp, which focuses on creating a Bitcoin Lightning network wallet on Urbit.

“Buy Bitcoin” Sign Replicas Sold For 0.8 BTC Each

In 2019, Langalis created and sold 21 replicas of the iconic “Buy Bitcoin” sign, which fetched an average price of 0.8 BTC each. Today, this would be valued at approximately $51,300 per piece.

According to the listing, these replicas are proudly displayed in the offices of venture firms such as Paradigm, Blockchain Capital, Castle Island Ventures, and the crypto think-tank Coin Center.

After Langalis held up the sign during a 2017 House Financial Services hearing, he was escorted out of the building for violating committee rules. However, the image of the sign quickly spread across the internet. Following the event, bitcoin’s price surged by 3.7% at the time of the broadcast.

Since then, bitcoin’s value has skyrocketed, going from around $2,700 in July 2017 to a peak of over $73,000 last month. This increase has been in part due to significant regulatory decisions in the United States, including allowing the launch of spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds earlier this year.

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