2020 American Gold Buffalos Gem Proof

2020 American Gold Buffalos Gem Proof

Proof Gold Buffalos were first issued along with their business strike counterparts in 2006. The series started in large part as an American answer to gold coins that were purer than Gold Eagles, which were .9167 fine. The Buffalo Proofs a unique look at the designs of the iconic Buffalo Nickel, which was issued from 1913-1938. Fractional coins were issued in 1/10, 1/4, and ½ oz sizes in 2008, but since then only 1 oz coins have been struck for the series.

2020 Gold Buffalo Proof Designs

This series borrows both of its designs from James Earle Fraser’s Buffalo Nickel. When Fraser designed that coin, he set out to ensure that it could immediately be recognized as American anywhere in the world. To that end, he created a composite portrait of an elderly Native American for the obverse. He has long hair that is braided, feathers tied up at the back of his head, and facial features that make his ethnicity clear. “LIBERTY” is inscribed along the rim, while the date, “2020,” and an “F” for “Fraser” are inscribed on his shoulder. Unlike the business strike, the proof also includes the “W” mint mark of the West Point Mint behind his neck.

For the reverse design, Fraser used an American bison. Home to the country’s plains, the creature takes up much of the available space on this face. He is joined by several inscriptions, including both statutory mottoes, the name of the coin’s country, its face value, and its weight. Unlike the Gold Eagle, this coin also includes an inscription of its purity, “.9999 FINE GOLD.”

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