The Gold American Buffalo coin owes its existence to the Presidential $1 Coin Act of 2005. The U.S. Mint began producing the coins in 2006, marking the first time the Mint ever made a 24 karat gold coin (.9999 fine).
Each year, the U.S. Mint produces circulating bullion versions of the coin, plus a limited number of "Proof" coins, known for their mirror-like finish and exceptional quality. A small number of these proof coins achieves a perfect score of Proof 70 from one of the main grading services (PGCS or NGC).
In 2008 only, the U.S. Mint produced 4 sizes, including a $50 face value one-ounce coin, $25 one-half ounce coin, $10 one-quarter ounce coin and the $5 one-tenth ounce coin.
Preferred by Investors & Collectors
|PF70 Date Issue
||% Price Change
|2006 $50 Coin
|2007 $50 Coin
|2008 4-Coin Set
|2009 $50 Coin
|2010 $50 Coin
|2011 $50 Coin
|2012 $50 Coin
|2013 $50 Coin
|2013 $50 Rev PF
|2014 $50 Coin
|2015 $50 Coin
Source: Mintage figures provided by the United States Mint. "Proof 70 Population" indicates the number of coins in the given year that have been certified in perfect “Proof 70” condition (NGC, August 2015). Gold American Buffalo performance is based on the actual selling price by the U.S. Gold Bureau for Gold American Buffalo Proof 70 Investment Grade Coins. Past performance is not indicative of future results.
2013 American Buffalo 1oz Gold Reverse Proof 70 Coin
"Celebrate the centennial anniversary of one of the United States Mint’s most beloved designs – the American Buffalo. Designed by James Earle Fraser, a student of the legendary sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens, the American Buffalo design was first featured on the Type I Buffalo (or Indian Head) nickel in 1913. This legendary design remained in use on the nickel for 25 years. The design was given new life when it was used on the American Buffalo One Ounce Gold Proof Coin in 2006, the first 24-karat gold proof coin ever struck by the United States Mint. -- U.S. Mint
We celebrate this 100-year milestone with an American Buffalo One Ounce Gold Reverse Proof Coin. Reversing the mirror-like background finish of the traditional proof coin and applying it instead to the design elements of the coin achieves a magnificent visual contrast against the uniquely frosted background. This anniversary edition captures the beauty of coin design and the modernization of coin production over the last 100 years in one magnificent showpiece."
The Date Run Collection: For Serious Investors & Collectors
Looking for something even more unique? Consider a "Date Run Set," including one of each Gold Buffalo ever minted. This set contains all the Gold American Buffalo Proof coins mint since 2006 including the 2008 4-coin set All coins are graded in a perfect Proof 70 grade.
The Date Run Includes:
Gold American Buffalo Coin Facts
All of the American Buffalo Gold coins feature a front-side (obverse) design created by James Earle Fraser and used on the original "Buffalo Nickel" issued in 1913. It is a Native American portrait believed to be based on a mix of three Indian chiefs, from three separate tribes: Big Tree, Iron Tail and Two Moons.
Atop a mound of dirt on the reverse (back) of the coin stands an American Bison, which commonly are referred to as buffalo. The animal depicted on the reverse is believed by most to be the bison named Black Diamond, who lived in the New York City Central Park Zoo during the 1910s. It is said that Fraser had to have someone distract the buffalo while he sneaked to a position beside it to draw. Otherwise, the buffalo would turn to face him and Fraser couldn't get the profile he wanted.
Also of interest are the 2001 American Buffalo Commemorative Silver Dollars which were struck by the US Mint as one of two commemorative coins series issued that year. The Mint released the strikes for sale to the public on June 7, 2001. These special edition coins also featured Fraser's beloved classic Native American and Buffalo design first seen on the 1913-1938 circulating nickel. Many commonly refer to that coin as the "Indian Head Nickel" or the "Buffalo Nickel." The coins were authorized by Congress with the American Buffalo Coin Commemorative Coin Act of 2000 (Public Law 106-375). Despite having a maximum mintage of 500,000 coins, the silver dollars sold out in two weeks making it one of the few modern commemorative coins to do so. To view a Proof 70 version of the 2001 American Buffalo Commemorative Silver Dollar, click here >
The design of the American Buffalo gold bullion coin is a modified version of James Earle Fraser's design for the Indian Head nickel (Type 1), issued in early 1913. After a raised mound of dirt below the animal on the reverse was reduced, the Type 2 variation continued to be minted for the rest of 1913 and every year until 1938, except for 1922, 1932, and 1933 when no nickels were struck. Generally, Fraser's Indian Head nickel design is regarded as among the best designs of any U.S. coins. The same design also was used on the 2001 Smithsonian commemorative coin.
James Earle Fraser (November 4, 1876 – October 11, 1953) was one of the most prominent American sculptors of the first half of the 20th century. His work is integral to many of Washington, D.C.'s most iconic structures.