Coin Specifications

Category: Buffalo Five Cents (1913-1938)
Mint: San Francisco
Mintage: 7,521,000
Obverse Designer: James Earle Fraser
Reverse Designer: James Earle Fraser
Composition: Copper-Nickel
Weight: 5.0000g
Diameter: 21.2mm
Edge: Plain
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1919 S 5C MS obverse 1919 S 5C MS reverse

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Description & Analysis

This issue was widely hoarded by collectors in low grades during the 1930s-50s, yet by then a good percentage of the mintage was already dateless and thus lost. Pieces grading F 12 and higher are scarce and highly sought.

Mint State examples are scarce but not truly rare. Most, however, are of very poor quality as made. Weak strikes from worn dies are the norm. The example illustrated was coined from badly clashed dies. Its obverse was then ground down to remove the resulting "chin whiskers," and this has left the Indian almost neckless.

Gems are exceedingly rare for this date, and none will be fully struck to the extent of early dates in this series. The master hubs for both obverse and reverse lost some detail from repeated use, and this led to a gradual erosion of fine detail that is most evident when viewing the proofs of 1936-37.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 1/17/2017

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

1919 S 5C MS
Base $ 17.00 38.00 75.00 130 250 375 400 440 550 625 875 975 1600 3150 13000 105000 - - - -
$ - - - - - - - - - 4600 38500 - - -

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Total Graded: 815
Low Grade: G
Average Grade: 55
High Grade: 66

Upcoming Auctions

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Auction House
Sale / Lot
2/11/2007 PCGS MS 62   Goldberg February 11-14, 2007 Pre-Long Beach Coin and Currency Auction, 39/Lot# 1201 $1,092.50
5/8/2011 PCGS VF 25   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 05/08/2011, 114/Lot# 7992 $90.20
7/16/2012 PCGS VF 25   Teletrade Auction 3312, 3312/Lot# 1511 $100.00
8/4/2013 NGC AU 55   David Lawrence Rare Coins Internet Auction # 763, 772/Lot# 273 $350.00
8/30/2013 PCGS MS 64   Stack's Bowers The September 2013 Philadelphia Auction, 195/Lot# 3060 $2,820.00
12/14/2014 NGC AU 55   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(2), 131451/Lot# 27438 $305.50
10/4/2015 NGC Details AU Details  Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(1), 131541/Lot# 23082 $176.25
10/29/2015 PCGS AU 58   Heritage Auctions 2015 October 29 - November 1 US Coins Signature Auction - New York Session(4), 1225/Lot# 7235 $493.50

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