The other day a new Avalanche peer briefly joined the eCash network with a total stake of 18,934,792,139.08 XEC. It was suddenly the largest staker on the network, so I decided to do a little digging.
The first thing I discovered was the stake was made up of two addresses:
Going back a few hops revealed that both addresses were connected to an early Bitcoin miner from all the way back in early 2010.
10B XEC wallet
The first address holds 10B XEC and has remained untouched since it was created on October 16, 2017, presumably as a result of the owner splitting his BTC and BCH.
Prior to that, the coins had been sitting here since June 26, 2011:
Then on October 16, 2017 they moved the BTC here:
And the BCH here (where both the BCH and XEC have sat unmoved since):
For anyone who is confused, the two addresses below are the same but one is in the eCash format and the other is in the BCH format (Electrum ABC has an address converter tool where you can confirm):
9B XEC wallet
The second address holding just under 9B XEC can also be traced back to the early days of Bitcoin. Before the BTC and BCH were split, they sat together in the same matching BTC and BCH addresses:
The BTC is moved and eventually ends up here:
The BCH is moved and ends up here:
And the corresponding XEC address is here:
This second stash of coins has seen more activity than the 10B covered earlier. BTC, BCH and XEC have all moved over the years. For example, it appears ~3200 BCH has been spent, 490M XEC has been spent, and about 20 BTC spent.
While we know the BCH and XEC in these addresses are controlled by the same private keys and thus owned by the same person, it’s theoretically possible the BTC addresses could be owned by someone else. Either the original owner merely split their coins into different addresses and continued to hold all forks, or they sold the split BCH to a single buyer in October 2017. I find the former scenario much more likely.
So why does any of this matter?
What I find interesting is that whoever this person might be, he made the effort to create an avalanche proof and run a staking node, brief though it may have been. The whale revealed his presence, and whether or not he ever comes back, I like seeing there’s interest in the eCash project by even the oldest of Bitcoiners.
Something hardly anyone talks about is that there are two different kinds of Bitcoiners. There’s Old Bitcoiners and New Bitcoiners. Old Bitcoiners still hold their keys for all forks of Bitcoin going back to the Genesis block. For example, Michael Saylor can’t run an eCash staking node with his Bitcoins because he acquired them after the Bitcoin Cash split. Our new whale friend presumably holds all forks, including the eCash fork.
Currently his stash of 19,000 BTC is worth over half a billion dollars. His eCash is worth only a thousandth of that at $500,000, but the fact he bothered to spin up an eCash staking node shows he’s paying attention to what the eCash project is doing.
I’m not implying this is Satoshi, or that this whale is going to be eCash’s savior. I have no expectations of them dumping either their BCH or BTC to buy more XEC. But the fact they made the effort to set up an Avalanche node can be seen as a positive sign. It’s evidence that at least one particular whale, one potentially worth more than the entire market cap of XEC on his own, is still following what the eCash project is doing.
Had eCash started a new genesis block, this kind of activity would not have been possible. But since eCash is a continuation of Satoshi’s original Bitcoin project, we might find the occasional OG whale lurking in our midst.
eCash staking rewards goes live on November 15. I for one can’t wait to see what happens over the course of the next 30 days as we approach the beginning of a new era of eCash.