American Silver Buffalo Coins

American buffalo silver dollar coins are highly desirable collector’s items, and if you are interested in purchasing a coin whose original was designed to include nothing but images that were entirely American in origin, then this will be a good investment. Obtaining one is likely to prove somewhat expensive, since so few were struck and they were bought up so quickly by collectors.

The silver dollars bearing the Indian’s and bison’s likenesses were offered in four different variations, all of which might be of interest to those fascinated by numismatics, or its profit potential. No bullion coins were issued, of course, since the American Buffalo Silver Dollars are commemorative coins offered for sale directly through mail, phone, or electronic ordering only.

There is a proof version and an uncirculated version, as well as a set that is made up of one of each, and a so-called “Coinage and Currency Set”. A Buffalo dollar is likely to set you back between $200 and $300 on the current market, but is sure to be a prized addition to your collection thanks to its rarity and its unique depiction of nothing but unmistakable Americana.

Properties of the American Buffalo Silver Dollar

The American Buffalo Silver Dollar was made available to the public in 2001, and sold out in a matter of 14 days, meaning that its availability from the government is one of the briefest of any commemorative coin in the history of the United States. Unlike many coins, it was sold directly to final purchasers by the U.S. Mint, using telephone, fax, Internet, and mail order. The coin is a standard sized silver coin, 1 ½ inches across, and weighing somewhat less than an ounce (around 26 grams).

Besides weighing less than an ounce, the American Buffalo Silver Dollar’s silver content is noticeably lower that of, for example, the American Silver Eagle, although their face value of $1 is identical. This is not a problem for most collectors, considering how rare and beautiful the coin is, but it is a fact that you should be aware of if you are contemplating the purchase of a Buffalo. The coin is struck from 90% pure silver and 10% copper.

The profile head of an American Indian appears on the coin’s obverse, gazing to the right, just as with the original Buffalo nickel. The date, 2001, is placed on the Indian’s shoulder, while a tiny F beneath this is an homage to the earlier coin’s designer, James Earl Fraser. The identity of the Indian has been the subject of confusion and even fraud, with Fraser himself claiming the portrait is a composite of three men – Big Tree, Iron Tail, and Two Moons – and various other Indians claiming to be the person shown in order to gain either fame or actual profit. The word “Liberty” appears in front of the Indian’s face.

A bison stands on the reverse of the coin, facing to the left, above the legend “One Dollar” and the mint mark D, indicating the Denver Mint. “United States of America”, “In God We Trust”, and “E Pluribus Unum” all appear on the reverse as well, the first two arched over the buffalo’s back, the last written under the animal’s chin. The buffalo was based on a zoo specimen on the East Coast of the United States, though it is unclear if the model was the famous bison “Black Diamond” or not.

History of the American Buffalo Silver Dollar

Many years ago, the vast plains of the American interior sported herds of grazing beasts that could rival even the gigantic migrations of the Serengeti in Africa today. The American bison, also known as the buffalo, dwelt in the grasslands of the Great Plains for countless generations, moving constantly to new grass as they ate the herbage nearly to the roots. Formidable and aggressive bovines, bison were no easy prey either for wolves or for Indians arms only with bows and arrows.

These huge herbivores weigh more than a ton, and stand 6 ½ feet (2 meters) tall at their high, humped shoulders, which are covered in a distinctive woolly mantle. The earth once shook beneath herds of millions, and though the activities of human hunters nearly drove the bison to extinction, a combination of conservation efforts and commercial farming have raised their numbers to around half a million in the early twenty-first century.

The buffalo is as distinctively American an animal as the bald eagle or the pronghorn antelope, so it is not surprising that its image eventually found its way onto coins minted in the United States. The buffalo nickel made use of the bison’s bulky figure on the reverse, with the profile head of an Indian warrior on the obverse, commemorating two of the distinctive inhabitants of the early American plains.

The buffalo nickel was created due to Theodore Roosevelt’s probably justified belief that the American coinage of his day needed to be perked up a bit, and that fresher designs were needed. The nickel went into production in 1913 and continued almost until the beginning of the Second World War. It has become a very recognizable and well-liked coin of the U.S., and nearly any handful of random loose change is likely to have a buffalo nickel somewhere within it.

The American Buffalo Silver Dollar was issued in 2001 to revive the popular design that shows a native plains warrior and one of the mightiest beasts still to roam the North American continent. The creation of the dollar was authorized by President William Clinton late in 2000, immediately before he left office, and the original intent was to commemorate the founding of the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian.

However, the coin has come to commemorate the famous buffalo nickel as much as its original, intended purpose, and does so admirably, as well. The American Buffalo Silver Dollar was minted in a total quantity of half a million. The demand for the coin was greatly underestimated by the Treasury – the half million sold out in somewhat less than two weeks, and since no more have been struck, these are highly collectible coins with a limited supply and high value, which are available solely on the secondary market.

≫≫≫ Click Here To Buy Silver Online ≪≪≪