Coin Specifications

Category: Buffalo Five Cents (1913-1938)
Mint: San Francisco
Mintage: 9,689,000
Catalog: KM-134
Obverse Designer: James Earle Fraser
Reverse Designer: James Earle Fraser
Composition: Copper-Nickel
Weight: 5.00 Grams
Diameter: 21.2mm
Edge: Plain
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
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1920 S 5C MS obverse 1920 S 5C MS reverse

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There are no varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

Despite a fairly high production for the San Francisco Mint, choice examples of the 1920 S nickel are very rare. The vast majority were poorly made from quite worn and blurry dies. Combined with sometimes indifferent luster, these conditions account for the great rarity of certified gems.

The problem of heavily worn and indistinct dies is especially prevalent with this coin's reverse, as it carries no date, permitting the dies to be used in subsequent years until they failed completely. Sadly, this would be the paradigm during most of the 1920s for both the Denver and San Francisco Mints.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 4/3/2014

Click on a price to see historical prices, comparison charts and trends.

1920 S 5C MS
Base $ 5.00 12.50 33.00 100.00 200 200 290 315 370 460 570 650 1150 2200 3950 22000 45000 - - - -
$ 225 310 340 415 500 625 735 1450 2850 6650 31050 - - -
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Total Graded: 706
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 60
High Grade: 66

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
2/27/2003 PCGS MS 64   Heritage Auctions 2003 February Long Beach Signature Sale #314, 314/Lot# 5949 $3,450.00
9/6/2004 PCGS MS 64   Goldberg September 6-7, 2004 Pre-Long Beach Coin Auction, 26/Lot# 546 $4,140.00
5/4/2005 PCGS MS 64   Heritage Auctions 2005 St. Louis, MO (CSNS) Signature Auction #372, 372/Lot# 6146 $3,220.00
12/31/2007 NGC VF 25   David Lawrence Rare Coins Monday - Internet Auction # 208, 214/Lot# 222 $109.25
7/8/2010 NGC MS 64   Heritage Auctions 2010 July Orlando, FL (Summer FUN) Signature US Coin Auction #1142, 1142/Lot# 3324 $2,760.00
5/1/2011 NGC XF 45   Teletrade Auction 3057, 3057/Lot# 1279 $161.00
10/17/2012 PCGS   Stack's Bowers The November 2012 Baltimore Auction - US and World Lots - Live and Internet Only Sessions, 144/Lot# 24349 $239.70
12/23/2012 PCGS Genuine VF   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 12/23/2012, 54/Lot# 80668 $55.00

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