Buffalo or Bison Nickel??

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by SensibleSal66, Sep 25, 2023.

  1. -jeffB

    -jeffB Greshams LEO Supporter

    They're bison, but in the US we always called them buffalo, even though they're not much like actual buffalo.

    Similarly, for a long time, we called our indigenous people Indians, even though they're from nowhere near India and don't look much like actual Indians.

    We in the US aren't always so great with our words.
    lardan likes this.
  2. Avatar

    Guest User Guest

    to hide this ad.
  3. robec

    robec Junior Member

    When I was young in the 50’s we would go Missouri by car each year from California to see the grandparents. We drove on Route 66 pretty much all the way. My best memories were going to the Buffalo Ranch somewhere in Oklahoma. It seemed like there were more than one but being under 10 my imagination may have taken over.
    lardan likes this.
  4. -jeffB

    -jeffB Greshams LEO Supporter

    When my family was traveling back and forth between central VA and central MD in the mid- to late 1970s, there was a field on the east side of I-81 just north of Harrisonburg where there was a herd of bison (which we of course called "buffalo", being good Americans). That was a favorite landmark on the trip; we got some good long looks once the speed limit was dropped to 55. They disappeared eventually -- the linked article says the owner sold off most of the land in 1979, but I'm not sure what became of the bison.
    lardan and Randy Abercrombie like this.
  5. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    Since we are telling buffalo stories, I'll share mine. At the tender age of 17 I joined the Army and went immediately to Fort Sill Oklahoma which bordered the Wichita Wildlife Refuge. And the wildlife refuge had the Wichita mountain range (more like a big hill).... First weekend pass me and a buddy decided we would camp on that hill only to awaken bright and early the next morning to find that we were surrounded by a large herd of those beasts.... They are much larger when you are close and personal by the way.
    charley, dwhiz, lardan and 1 other person like this.
  6. charley

    charley Well-Known Member

    Maybe the problem is not a U.S. issue. Wallace and Hoebel research traced it to the French fur trappers. They had never seen a NA Bison, and were familiar with African and Asian Buffalos and called the NA Bison "Boeuf". The French fur trappers traded with the Hunkpapa, and interestingly, there were African fur trappers working with the French doing the same, and the Swahili language had a translation of the African water buffalo similar to the Comanche pronunciation of kuutsuu. Kuutsuu translated into thathajka in Hunkpapa. The Spanish root was "Bufalo" and interaction with the Comanche and Apache (never pleasant) passed the word along, , and the Comanche pronunciation was thaauaa and the NA Indian word for the Black fur traders was phonetically "tauaaooveaeetaa thathaj". Boofaauu was the closest Phonetic combined sound that became the easiest to use in trade...there was no phonetic "L" sound in Comanche really, so Boofaauu was sort of bastardized and took on the Spanish root of boofaaluu.

    So, French to Swahili to Comanche/Apache/Hunkpapa/Spanish derivitive combination.

    But of course it can only happen in America, so....maybe you are right, after all.
  7. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    Dang Charley..... You really do know "stuff"....
    BuffaloHunter and charley like this.
  8. -jeffB

    -jeffB Greshams LEO Supporter

    So many of the faults of English can be laid at the feet of French. And then France has the nerve to maintain an Academy to preserve the virtue of "their" language.

    Oh, well. We'll let the languages compete in the new global e-commons, and let le chips fall where they may.
    charley likes this.
  9. Millard

    Millard Coindog

    I prefer Buffalo. Partly because thats what I was raised thinking they were called. And I never heard of Bison Bill Cody. But in the 2005 U S Mint release the Mint refers to them as Bison. And thats coming straight from the Gubmint, so you know thats gotta be right.

    2005 Bison Nickel 1.jpg 2005 Bison Nickel 2.jpg
  10. masterswimmer

    masterswimmer A Caretaker, can't take it with me

    Raised 'thinking' they were called Buffalo Nickels? It's a fact. They were absolutely called Buffalo Nickels.

    Whitman not only called them Buffalo Nickels in the days of yore, but they still do.
    So does Dansco.

    So did the US Mint.



  11. -jeffB

    -jeffB Greshams LEO Supporter

    And remember that the next time someone grouses about calling one-cent coins "pennies".


    We don't care what the rest of the world calls "pennies", and we don't care what the rest of the world calls "buffalo". We're Number One!
  12. lardan

    lardan Supporter! Supporter

    Okay, let's settle this once and for all. On the Howdy Doody Show was the MC "Buffalo Bob" or was he "Bison Bob"? If you don't know who Howdy Doody is look it up on the internet.
  13. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    It's Howdy Doody time... It's Howdy Doody time....
    charley, masterswimmer and lardan like this.
  14. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    Is it Buffalo or Bison? Well the ecientific name of the animal on the five cent piece is Bos Bison Bison. So I think it's a Bison.
  15. CoinCorgi

    CoinCorgi Tell your dog I said hi!

    Basoon chips.
    Randy Abercrombie and -jeffB like this.
  16. -jeffB

    -jeffB Greshams LEO Supporter

    I'm in favor, but only after we've run all the bagpipes through first.
  17. charley

    charley Well-Known Member

    Lets review that scientific thing. Bison derives from Latin and as I recall, means Ox. Then we are to take the word of the Poser that classified it, and who NEVER saw one nor visited the Bufalo territories (see what I did there?).

    I think one of his so-called apostles once visited the east coast, but he never saw a bufalo in the roaming territories (see what I did there, again?) or anywhere else.

    So, who are we going to believe, some Euro wacko from the what...1700s...or the Spanish, Apache, Comanche, French and Swahili language speakers conversing in NA in the 1700s in real time and living off the Bufalo (see what I did there, again?) and saw them daily? A completely unique NA experience that did not happen anywhere else in the World.

    Next, I want to know how the Poser played Cowboys and Indians when he was a kid.....

    So, for these reasons among others, I call Baloney.

    Tell me what that Poser thinks a Boeuf looks like?

    Truth in editing: added an "i" where appropriate.
    lardan and Randy Abercrombie like this.
  18. robec

    robec Junior Member

    If they would have initially named or called them bison nickels from the beginning I would have no problem. They’ve been known to me as Buffalo nickels as far back as I can remember, which covers 70+ years. I imagine I’ll keep calling them that until my dying day.
    charley, lardan and -jeffB like this.
  19. CoinCorgi

    CoinCorgi Tell your dog I said hi!

    The three H’s: home, hump, and horns
    Randy Abercrombie likes this.
  20. lardan

    lardan Supporter! Supporter

    Charley, I think to you it is a buffalo, right?
    charley likes this.
  21. mpcusa

    mpcusa "Official C.T. TROLL SWEEPER"

    let’s keep it simple and call it a buffalo…LOL
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page