Commemorate America's 35th president with this iconic 1964 proof Kennedy half dollar in choice proof condition. This beautiful collector's item comes from the first minting of the Kennedy half dollar and is made of 90 percent silver and 10 percent copper, unlike later editions that contained far less silver.
Just under 4 million examples of this proof coin were minted in 1964, making it much rarer than the business strike run, which had a run of 87 million. Featuring a heads-side profile of Kennedy designed by Gilroy Roberts and a tails-side depiction of the Seal of the President of the United States designed by Frank Gasparro, the 1964 proof Kennedy half dollar features a beautiful glossy finish not shared by the business strike run.Background of the Kennedy Half Dollar
When President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas in November 1964, it didn't take very long for development of the commemorative half dollar to get underway. Eva Adams, then the Director of the United States Mint, and Gilroy Roberts, then its Chief Engraver, reportedly discussed plans for a coin mere hours after Kennedy was pronounced dead. Congress passed the bill that authorized the coin on December 30, 1963 — just 38 days after the President's death.
By late March of 1964, the coin had officially gone into circulation. It was instantly hugely popular, rapidly snapped up by collectors, speculators, and a still-mourning nation.
The 1964 Kennedy half dollar proof was made of 90 percent silver and 10 percent copper, which ended up indirectly contributing to a US coin shortage. Rising silver prices caused some people to melt coins down for their material value rather than use them for their currency value. For the next five years, the US Mint used a 40 percent silver and 60 percent copper mix to try and keep the coin in circulation; after 1970, silver was completely removed and the coin was usually made of a mix of nickel and copper.
How much is a Kennedy Half Dollar worth?
A 1964 Kennedy Half Dollar Proof can be worth around $25 in stunning proof condition while some really high grade examples can run hundreds if not thousands of dollars.