Later this month, on May 23, the United States Mint will begin selling its annual proof American Buffalo gold coin featuring James Earle Fraser’s famous design that was first used on the 1913 Buffalo Nickel.
Today, the U.S. Mint confirmed that later this year it will also offer a special reverse proof version to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Fraser’s design.
"This special edition of the coin celebrates the centennial anniversary of the American Buffalo design by James Earle Fraser first featured on the Type I Buffalo (or Indian Head) nickel in 1913," the Mint said.
Fraser’s design features a profile of a Native American on the obverse and a reverse depicting an American Buffalo, also known as a bison. A reverse proof features a mirror-like finish on top designs elements instead of on backgrounds as seen on traditional proofs.
An on-sale date is not yet established, but the reverse proof’s price will be determined using the standard U.S. Mint pricing matrix for numismatic gold coins. Also, its mintage will be fixed by collector demand.
While sold separately, the reverse proof American Buffalo gold coin will ship in the same wooden box as the traditional proof. The outer box, though, will instead feature a leather-like material to make it easily recognizable as a different product.
$50 American Buffalo gold coins are struck from one ounce of 24-karat, or 99.99% pure gold. They have a diameter of 1.287 inches and a thickness of 0.116 inches. Each is minted at the United States Mint facility at West Point. Bullion version for investors and proof versions for collectors have been issued annually since 2006. A collector uncirculated version was also released in 2008. All the collector coins, including the upcoming reverse proof, carry the "W" mint mark. Bullion coins do not.