1969 Half Dollar: The Ultimate Collector’s Guide

The 1971 Kennedy half dollar bears the distinction as the first of the series not to have silver within its composition.

But, it’s the legacy of the Kennedy half dollar as a whole which gives this issue its unique gravitas and importance.

Within mere hours of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination on November 22, 1963, a call was placed from Mint Director Eva Adams to Chief Engraver Gilroy Roberts to inform him that Kennedy was under serious consideration to be placed on one of the United States Mint’s larger silver coins – the quarter dollar, half dollar, or silver dollar.

It was Jacqueline Kennedy who made the call between the three, preferring that her husband replace Benjamin Franklin on the half dollar rather than potentially dishonoring George Washington with replacement on the quarter.

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1928 Two Dollar Bill: The Ultimate Collector’s Guide

The 1976 Series two dollar bill marked the return for the denomination after a ten-year absence in circulation, reintroduced in hopes of becoming a cost-saving measure for the United States Treasury.

However, despite the record number of two dollar bills printed in 1976 (over a half billion!), the bill was and remains the most marginalized and underutilized Federal Reserve Note in circulation – never gaining a heavy circulation foothold or putting any sort of dent into production numbers for other bills in the United States paper money cache.

n March 1862, the first two dollar bill was issued as a Legal Tender Note bearing the portrait of Alexander Hamilton. Seven years later, Hamilton’s portrait was replaced with that of Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States.

The two dollar bill was a large-sized note until sizing was standardized starting with the 1929 Series, and it was issued as a United States Note, National Bank Note, silver certificate, Coin Note and Federal Reserve Bank Note with various portrait cameos on the obverse and designs on the reverse.

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1983 Quarter: The Ultimate Guide

The 1967 Washington quarter was minted at a pivotal point for the nation’s 25-cent piece and coin supply as a whole.

It’s just a few years removed from some major changes which shook the entire foundation of the United States Mint and the quarter itself.

While it’s not a collector’s gem in its normal circulated form, it’s still a fantastic historical landmark when it comes to a sea change in United States coinage.

The original Washington quarter’s inception in 1932 came with its share of major controversy.

A public competition was held by a special committee and the Commission of Fine Arts in late 1930 to design a commemorative medal for the Bicentennial of George Washington’s birth in 1932.

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1952 Dime: The Ultimate Collector’s Guide

The 1913 Barber dime is a true collector’s gem which comes in the final half decade of a 25-year run for three coins designed by former Chief Mint Engraver Charles E. Barber – a series which also included the United States quarter and half dollar.

The Barber coinage serves as one of the most sought-after and celebrated sets of circulated United States coins in the nation’s history – a pivotal set with equally interesting stories of its inception and demise.

In 1879, public dissatisfaction over the Seated Liberty designs for United States coinage was at a fever pitch.

Many thought the Seated Liberty designs made US coins look second-rate compared to those from Western European countries, increasing pressure on Washington and Philadelphia to find a suitable replacement.

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1927 Buffalo Nickel: The Ultimate Collector’s Guide

The 1941 Jefferson nickel is a fascinating coin specimen, albeit not exactly a collector’s dream.

Its mintage came during an extremely tumultuous time in the world landscape, serving as the last full pre-World War II coin of the Jefferson nickel series.

The next year, its entire composition would be altered for nearly four years as wartime gripped the nation and made such a complete composition overhaul a tactical must.

The Jefferson nickel’s roots trace back to the ignominious end of the Buffalo nickel’s 25-year run at the end of 1937.

The Buffalo nickel had been the source of several universal striking issues since its inception in 1913, leaving Mint officials chomping at the bit to replace it when its mandatory 25-year term in circulation ended.

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1917 Penny: The Ultimate Collector’s Guide

The 1906 Indian Head penny was issued during the last half decade of the coin design’s run in circulation, and the 1906 edition marked the highest mintage total to date in the history of the United States’ one-cent coin – with over 96 million minted.

While that number would be eclipsed the next year with the penny in high demand, this still marked the beginning of what would prove to be a short apex for the Indian Head penny.

The Indian Head penny’s inception came after a disastrous one-year mintage of the Flying Eagle cent in 1857.

The cent prior was as big as a half dollar, necessitating a change when the discovery of gold in California led to rampant inflation and a rise in the price of copper.

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1924 Silver Dollar: The Ultimate Collector’s Guide

The 1886 Morgan silver dollar comes from the 27-year long first run of the series (1878-1904), and it has found itself on many a coin collector’s wish list over the past century.

The coin’s rich, bold and large design makes it a welcome abnormality in comparison to many coins from the late 19th Century and early 20th Century.

The story of its inception and proliferation only adds to its mystique and weight in the coin collection market.

In 1873, the United States Congress’s enactment of the Fourth Coinage Act ended the free coinage of silver within the country – a fateful decision which led to a sharp decrease in the price of silver after mining increased exponentially on the West Coast.

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1952 Half Dollar: The Ultimate Collector’s Guide

The 1971 Kennedy half dollar bears the distinction as the first of the series not to have silver within its composition.

But, it’s the legacy of the Kennedy half dollar as a whole which gives this issue its unique gravitas and importance.

Within mere hours of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination on November 22, 1963, a call was placed from Mint Director Eva Adams to Chief Engraver Gilroy Roberts to inform him that Kennedy was under serious consideration to be placed on one of the United States Mint’s larger silver coins – the quarter dollar, half dollar, or silver dollar.

It was Jacqueline Kennedy who made the call between the three, preferring that her husband replace Benjamin Franklin on the half dollar rather than potentially dishonoring George Washington with replacement on the quarter.

Continue reading >

1942 Quarter: The Ultimate Collector’s Guide

The 1967 Washington quarter was minted at a pivotal point for the nation’s 25-cent piece and coin supply as a whole.

It’s just a few years removed from some major changes which shook the entire foundation of the United States Mint and the quarter itself.

While it’s not a collector’s gem in its normal circulated form, it’s still a fantastic historical landmark when it comes to a sea change in United States coinage.

The original Washington quarter’s inception in 1932 came with its share of major controversy.

A public competition was held by a special committee and the Commission of Fine Arts in late 1930 to design a commemorative medal for the Bicentennial of George Washington’s birth in 1932.

Continue reading >

1947 Dime: The Ultimate Collector’s Guide

The 1913 Barber dime is a true collector’s gem which comes in the final half decade of a 25-year run for three coins designed by former Chief Mint Engraver Charles E. Barber – a series which also included the United States quarter and half dollar.

The Barber coinage serves as one of the most sought-after and celebrated sets of circulated United States coins in the nation’s history – a pivotal set with equally interesting stories of its inception and demise.

In 1879, public dissatisfaction over the Seated Liberty designs for United States coinage was at a fever pitch.

Many thought the Seated Liberty designs made US coins look second-rate compared to those from Western European countries, increasing pressure on Washington and Philadelphia to find a suitable replacement.

Continue reading >