When the American Gold Buffalo was released in 2006, it represented the first time the United States Mint had struck coins in a composition of 24 karat gold. The coins were released in bullion versions and collector offerings. The collector coins have included proof coins and collectible uncirculated coins struck in four different bullion weights. Both extremes of high and low mintages have already been experienced for the recently introduced series.
The design for the Gold Buffalo coins is taken from James Earle Fraser’s Buffalo Nickel, issued for circulation from 1913 to 1938. The obverse features an iconic image of a Native American chief based on a composite of real life models. The reverse features the classic image of an American Bison or buffalo. With the nickel series representing a long time collector favorite, the new gold coin series was highly anticipated.