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1927-S Buffalo Nickel, MS66
One of the Premier Condition Rarities

1927-S 5C MS66 NGC. While most San Francisco nickel issues of the 1920s are infamous for weak luster and uninspiring strikes, the 1927-S provides something of a respite for the Buffalo nickel enthusiast. As Lange writes in his The Complete Guide to Buffalo Nickels, this issue " ... is generally well struck" for its time; moreover, the luster is often a vast improvement, with Lange citing the prooflike tendencies of many Mint State examples. Despite these positives, however, the 1927-S remains challenging, especially in better grades, since it was little saved at the time of issue.
While the 1927-S is generally available for a price across all circulated grades and even in Select Mint State, Choice examples are decidedly elusive, and Gems approach condition rarity status. Going even further, NGC has graded only four MS66 examples of this issue, whereas PCGS has certified none (11/11). Interestingly, three were awarded the Star designation; while this would suggest resubmissions, there are at least two distinct examples at that level, as evidenced by the piece offered by Heritage in May 2004.
That coin has a completely distinct toning pattern from the present representative, which exhibits vibrant gold-orange and peach patina with occasional elements of subdued magenta at the lower reverse. The strike is astonishingly crisp, particularly on the Indian's braid and the bison's horn, and the mildly reflective luster beneath the toning lends the coin spectacular eye appeal. A marvelously preserved piece that would be a highlight of any specialist collection.
Ex: Chicago Rarities Sale (Heritage, 4/2008), lot 219, which brought $125,350; ANA Signature (Heritage, 7-8/2008), lot 1580.
From The Teton Ranch Collection.(Registry values: N7079) (NGC ID# 22SA, PCGS# 3962)

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Auction Dates
January, 2012
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 3
Members Tracking: N/A
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