Shell currency was used across the globe and as legal tender in some places into the late 19th Century. While nearly valueless in their places of origin, at their destination the shells were often the preeminent signs of wealth.
Portuguese, Dutch, English and French traders introduced the shell as a currency in central Africa, then used it to purchase gold and slaves.
The Shell Oil company got its name in 1833 when the founder's father, Marcus Samuel, started an import business to sell seashells to London collectors.
Each of these pieces is made from $20,000 in losing lottery tickets.