Coin Specifications

Category: Buffalo Five Cents (1913-1938)
Mint: San Francisco
Mintage: 11,860,000
Catalog: KM-134
Obverse Designer: James Earle Fraser
Reverse Designer: James Earle Fraser
Composition: Copper-Nickel
Weight: 5.0000g
Diameter: 21.2mm
Edge: Plain
Numismatic specification data provided by Krause Publications NumisMaster.
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1916 S 5C MS obverse 1916 S 5C MS reverse

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There are no NGC varieties for this coin.

Description & Analysis

The booming wartime economy boosted production at all three mints, even though America was not yet a participant in actual warfare until the following year. This issue had a high mintage for a San Francisco coin, and worn examples are only slightly scarce. They'd be far more available were it not for this coin type's exposed dates that wore away so quickly.

Those few Mint State examples surviving from fresh dies are extremely bold and attractive, but most MS pieces show various degrees of die erosion and blurring of the peripheral design elements, such as the mintmark and designer's initial. 1916-S nickels become quite scarce at the gem level (MS 65 and higher).


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 9/14/2015

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

1916 S 5C MS
Base $ 12.00 15.50 21.00 42.00 75.00 125 135 155 170 195 215 245 310 700 2150 5700 24000 - - -
$ 85.00 - - - - - - 265 400 1000 2800 12250 28500 -

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Total Graded: 967
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 61
High Grade: 67

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
4/24/2005 PCGS MS 63   Teletrade Auction 2030, 2030/Lot# 1087 $275.00
6/13/2005 NGC MS 64   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet-Only Auction #42, 46/Lot# 220 $448.50
9/23/2007 PCGS MS 66   Goldberg September 23-26, 2007 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 42/Lot# 2532 $5,060.00
2/3/2014 NGC MS 65   Heritage Auctions 2014 February 3 - 5 US Coins Signature Auction - New York Session(5), 1202/Lot# 7501 $528.75
10/12/2014 PCGS   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 10/12/2014, 190/Lot# 211097 $225.00
2/5/2015 NGC MS 65   Stack's Bowers 2015 Americana Auction, 6070/Lot# 1358 $1,205.55
2/1/2015 PCGS AU 58   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131506/Lot# 23150 $129.25
4/19/2015 PCGS AU 58   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(2), 131517/Lot# 27622 $111.63

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