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 NGC 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: 9/1/2015

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

1920 S 5C MS
Base $ 5.00 12.50 33.00 100.00 200 315 340 390 485 650 1175 1850 3850 20000 57000 - - - -
$ 225 - - - - 850 1450 2450 6100 38000 - - -

The World Coin Price Guide is independently compiled by Krause Publications’ NumisMaster. NGC makes this information available to its website visitors as a free service, but in no way does the information provided represent NGC’s official opinion or policy. For example, varieties listed in the World Coin Price Guide may not necessarily be recognized by NGC. Please contact NGC Customer Service with any questions.

NGC Price and Value Guides Disclaimer



Total Graded: 731
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 58
High Grade: 66

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
4/26/1996 PCGS MS 63   Heritage Auctions 1996 Kansas City Bullet Sale #154, 154/Lot# 100 $935.00
10/31/2005 PCGS AU 58   Teletrade Auction 2112, 2112/Lot# 3220 $313.60
2/11/2007 PCGS MS 64   Goldberg February 11-14, 2007 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 39/Lot# 1205 $4,800.00
5/27/2007 NGC MS 65   Goldberg May 27-30, 2007 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 41/Lot# 977 $23,000.00
1/5/2011 PCGS MS 62   Heritage Auctions 2011 January Tampa FUN Signature & Platinum Night US Coin Auction Session(6), 1151/Lot# 9883 $805.00
12/16/2012 PCGS Genuine VG   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 12/16/2012, 53/Lot# 89856 $9.33
2/22/2013 PCGS MS 64   Stack's Bowers The March 2013 Baltimore Auction, 181/Lot# 1247 $2,643.75
5/11/2014 PCGS MS 63   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 803, 812/Lot# 581 $1,800.00
5/17/2015 NGC Details AU Details  Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131521/Lot# 27078 $270.25

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1920 S 5C MS
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 63
Points: 2585
Owner: Whidbey Island Collection
Grade: VF 20
Points: 366
Owner: The Wilson Collection
View the Registry Image Gallery

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