1924 Buffalo Nickel
For the first time since 1920, Philadelphia, Denver, and San Francisco were all minting Buffalo nickels in 1924. One would think that this would have lent to bevies of Buffalo nickels that year, but that actually isn’t the case, as a relatively unremarkable sum of about 29 million Buffalo nickels were made that year. In fact, the 1924-S, with a mintage of 1,437,000 is considered a semi-key. The other two Buffalo nickel issues from 1924 – the 1924 and 1924-D – are more common, with mintages of 21,620,000 and 5,258,000, respectively.
For coin collectors on a shoestring budget, 1924 Buffalo nickels are not particularly expensive, especially as compared to the high-priced issues from the 1910s. Still, the 1924-S Buffalo nickel, semi-key coin that it is, will set you back around $20 to $30 for an example in the lower circulated grades. The 1924-D Buffalo nickel also has a moderate price tag of around $10 for an example in well-worn grades. The 1924, however, only costs around $1 to $2 for a specimen in Good-4.
Buffalo nickels across the entire 1913-1938 run of the series are not very well struck, but you’ll be especially hard pressed to find good strikes among the branch-mint issues of the 1920s. The Buffalo nickel series was especially rough on United States Mint coin dies, thanks to an intricate design with several high-relief features (including the date, which commonly wore right off Buffalo nickels). So, if you’re looking to build an especially nice collection of Buffalo nickels, cherrypick for those that have a nice strike.