The United States Mint has started accepting orders for the 2013 Reverse Proof American Gold Buffalo. This highly anticipated offering was created to mark the 100th anniversary of James Earle Fraser’s designs appearing on the original Type I Buffalo Nickel.
The obverse design contains a profile portrait believed to be based on three different Native Americans. The two confirmed models were Chief Iron Tail of the Lakota Sioux and Chief Two Moons of the Cheyenne. The inscriptions include “Liberty” in the upper right field and the date “2013” on the shoulder. The designer’s initial appears as an incused “F” beneath the date, and the “W” mint mark for West Point appears to the left.
The reverse design features an American bison, commonly referred to as a “buffalo”, modeled after Black Diamond, a popular attraction at the New York Zoological Gardens. Inscriptions above read “United States of America” and “E Pluribus Unum”. The motto “In God We Trust” appears in the lower left field. The mound includes incuse inscriptions of the legal tender face value of “$50” and precious metal weight and fineness of “1 oz. .9999 fine gold”.
The 2013 Reverse Proof Gold Buffalo features a special finish which has the opposite appearance of the traditional proof. The raised design elements appear mirrored, while the background fields appear frosted. This is the first time that a reverse proof finish has been used for the series.
Each coin will be presented in an elegant matte finish hardwood box with a faux leather inset, along with a certificate of authenticity.
Orders will be accepting for the 2013 Reverse Proof Gold Buffalo only during a four week window beginning August 8, 2013 and ending on September 5, 2013 at 5:00 PM ET. There has been no mintage limit or household ordering limit established. Production will be based on customer demand during the specified ordering window.
Pricing for the offering has been set at an initial $1,640 per coin. This is based on an average market price of gold within the $1,250 to $1,299.99 range. The price may be adjusted as frequently as weekly based on the average market price of gold.
The 24 karat American Gold Buffalo coin series was launched in 2006. For each year, the US Mint has issued a one ounce bullion version and one ounce proof version of the coin. For a single year in 2008, the numismatic offerings were expanded to include fractional proofs and a range of collectible uncirculated coins.
During 2013, year to date sales for the bullion version of the coin have reached 182,500. The 2013 Proof Gold Buffalo has reached sales of 12,297 units and still remains available for sale.