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2019: Besides Berkshire, what is the most interesting or fun personal investment you have ever made?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Good morning. My name is Patrick Donahue from Eden Prairie, Minnesota, and I’m with my ten-year-old daughter, Brooke Donahue.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Hi, Warren. Hi, Charlie.
WARREN BUFFETT: Hi. It’s Brooke, is it?
AUDIENCE MEMBER: It is.
WARREN BUFFETT: Yeah.
AUDIENCE MEMBER: First, I’m a proud graduate of Creighton University. And I need to say a personal thank you for coming over the years to share your insights. And it’s been a tradition since I graduated in 1999 to come to the annual meeting, and thank you for a lifetime of memories.
WARREN BUFFETT: Thank you. (Applause)
AUDIENCE MEMBER: Brooke is a proud Berkshire shareholder and read the letter and had some questions regarding investments that have been made in the past. And she had made some interesting comments about what she thought was a lot of fun.
So, our question for both of you is: outside of Berkshire Hathaway, what is the most interesting or fun personal investment you have ever made? (Laughter)
WARREN BUFFETT: Well, they’re always more fun when you make a lot of money off of them. (Laughter)
Well, one time, I bought one share of stock in the Atled Corp. That’s spelled A-T-L-E-D. And Atled had 98 shares outstanding and I bought one. And not what you call a liquid security. (Laughter)
And Atled happened to be the word “delta” spelled backwards. And a hundred guys in St. Louis had each chipped in 50 or $100 or something to form a duck club in Louisiana and they bought some land down there.
Two guys didn’t come up with their — there were a hundred of them — two of them defaulted on their obligation to come up with a hundred dollars — so there were 98 shares out. And they went down to Louisiana and they shot some ducks.
But apparently somebody shot — fired a few shots into the ground and oil spurted out. And — (laughter) — those Delta duck club shares — and I think the Delta duck club field is still producing. I bought stock in it 40 years ago for $29,200 a share.
And it had that amount in cash and it was producing a lot, and they sold it. If they kept it, that stock might’ve been worth 2 or $3 million a share, but they sold out to another oil company.
That was certainly — that was the most interesting —
Actually, I didn’t have any cash at the time. And I went down and borrowed the money. I bought it for my wife. And I borrowed the money. And the loan officer said, “Would you like to borrow some money to buy a shotgun as well?” (Laughter)
Charlie, tell them about the one you missed. (Laughter)
CHARLIE MUNGER: Well, I got two investments that come to mind. When I was young and poor, I spent a thousand dollars once buying an oil royalty that paid me 100,000 a year for a great many years. But I only did that once in a lifetime.
On a later occasion, I bought a few shares of Belridge Oil, which went up 30 times rather quickly. But I turned down five times as much as I bought. It was the dumbest decision of my whole life. So, if any of you have made any dumb decisions, look up here and feel good about yourselves. (Laughter)