Coin Specifications

Category: Buffalo Five Cents (1913-1938)
Mint: Denver
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.
Link to this coin

1937 D 3 LEGS 5C MS obverse 1937 D 3 LEGS 5C MS reverse


  
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Description & Analysis

Coin collecting seems to be among the few hobbies in which the poorest examples of quality control are celebrated, but this issue has been a hot-ticket item since it was first reported in 1939.

Not a true variety, as the missing leg feature was present in the die when new, it is more properly described as a late die state (LDS) striking. The technical term that has been adopted by variety specialists is Abraded Die Reverse (ADR).

Conventional wisdom has it that the removal of the bison's foreleg came about through overpolishing of the die to eradicate clash marks, but other evidence in both dies suggests otherwise. The heavy erosion lines visible in the hindmost leg and in the Indian's neck establishes that this die pair was severely worn at the time. A more likely scenario is that both dies were repolished to smooth their fields by removing the heavy furrows that form on overused dies.

The famed 3-legged nickel is not rare in worn condition, but pieces grading XF and higher are scarce in relation to the great demand. Mint State coins are very elusive, with gems being genuinely rare.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 7/10/2015

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

1937 D 3 LEGS 5C MS
  GVGFVFXF5053555861626364656667686970
Base $ 520 600 690 775 1000 1150 1250 1375 1700 2500 3250 5500 10000 35000 67250 130000 - - -
$ - - - - 2000 - 3650 6500 13500 46000 - - -

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.

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Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 6313
Low Grade: PrAg
Average Grade: 53
High Grade: 67


Upcoming Auctions

A random selection of NGC coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
8/4/2015 XF 40   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(2), 131531/Lot# 21415
8/16/2015 VF 20   Heritage Auctions 2015 August 12 - 16 ANA US Coins Signature Auction - Chicago Session(6), 1223/Lot# 7368
8/16/2015 MS 61   Heritage Auctions 2015 August 12 - 16 ANA US Coins Signature Auction - Chicago Session(1), 1223/Lot# 3549
8/16/2015 AU 58   Heritage Auctions 2015 August 12 - 16 ANA US Coins Signature Auction - Chicago Session(1), 1223/Lot# 3548


Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
10/16/1996 PCGS AU 55   Teletrade Auction 0885, 885/Lot# 1206 $599.50
12/13/2007 NGC MS 61   David Lawrence Rare Coins Thursday - Internet Auction # 203, 209/Lot# 5189 $2,875.00
5/25/2008 NGC MS 62   Goldberg May 25-27, 2008 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 47/Lot# 3909 $2,875.00
3/17/2011 NGC MS 64   Heritage Auctions 2011 March Sacramento Signature ANA US Coin Auction Session(1), 1153/Lot# 3272 $7,762.50
2/28/2012 NGC AU 58   Stack's Bowers The March 2012 Baltimore Auction, 135/Lot# 1902 $1,495.00
4/22/2012 NGC AU 58   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(2), 131218/Lot# 23496 $1,322.50
12/13/2012 PCGS AU 55   Bonhams Coins and Medals, 20086/Lot# 1083 $1,170.00
4/7/2013 PCGS AU 50   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 04/07/2013, 69/Lot# 105107 $993.30
7/6/2014 NGC VF 20   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 07/06/2014, 188/Lot# 202751 $592.00


NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1937 D 3 LEGS 5C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base2853604535638209081047117313361435157316581799204826143349565672587756114832970848352
310391489648849954108912271369148116011705188222362859411861907424899817558359220
00000010891227136914811601170518822236285941186190742489981755800
000000113112811402152716291752196524253104488767247590102402363300
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 63
Points: 4343
Owner: Alan Lastufka
 
Grade: MS 63
Points: 3968
Owner: MarkPaul
 
View the Registry Image Gallery

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