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Franklin Half Dollar History

 

 

 

The Franklin Half Dollar was first made in 1948 and continued interrupted until 1963. The coin was made to commemorate Ben Franklin, one of our most beloved founders. Ben Franklin played a huge role making our great country what it is today. His devotion to America really was as patriotic as they come. He was admired by many people, including Nellie Tayloe Ross. Nellie was governor of Wyoming and was the first woman to hold such a government position. Furthermore, Ross wanted to see Franklin’s face on a coin, and so she made sure he was featured on a Half Dollar, the Franklin Half Dollar.

In 1947, the chief engraver John Sinnock was assigned the duty of designing the coin, due to his untimely death he could not complete his design. Thereafter, a engraver named Gilroy Roberts completed the design. Then on April 19th, 1948 the Franklin Half Dollar was released! The Franklin Half Dollar design consists of a detailed side portrait of our founding father which ends at the shoulder, the word “Liberty” standing tall at the top of the coin, and the phrase “ In God we trust” surrounding Franklin at the bottom of the coin. On the reverse of the Franklin Half Dollar shows the shining Liberty Bell with enough detail to show the famous crack of the bell. Alongside the bell is a bald eagle. Around the bell lies multiple phrases including “United States Of America, E Pluribus Unum and Half Dollar”. The coin's series was minted from 1948 - 1963 and was produced at the Philadelphia, Denver and, San Francisco.

Each Franklin Half Dollar had a .50c denomination and was composed of 90% silver. Collectors love the Franklin Half Dollar because of its low mintages in comparison to the Kennedy Half Dollar and its high silver content. Half Dollars the came after the Franklin Half Dollar rarely had silver in them. The only years that did were the 1964 Kennedy Half Dollar which had 90% silver, the 1965-1970 Kennedy Half Dollars that had 40% silver, and thereafter most half dollars no longer had any silver.

Franklin Half Dollar Mintages and Values

Date Mintage Good Very Fine Extremely Fine Uncirculated
1948 Franklin Half Dollar 3,006,814 N/A $9.00 $11.00 $20.00
1948-D Franklin Half Dollar 4,028,600 N/A $9.00 $11.00 $20.00
1949 Franklin Half Dollar 5,614,000 N/A $12.00 $18.00 $40.00
1949-D Franklin Half Dollar 4,120,600 N/A $12.00 $18.00 $45.00
1949-S Franklin Half Dollar 3,744,000 N/A $12.00 $20.00 $65.00
1950 Franklin Half Dollar 7,742,123 N/A $9.00 $11.00 $30.00
1950-D Franklin Half Dollar 8,031,600 N/A $9.00 $11.00 $26.00
1951 Franklin Half Dollar 16,802,102 N/A $9.00 $11.00 $14.00
1951-D Franklin Half Dollar 9,475,200 N/A $9.00 $11.00 $30.00
1951-S Franklin Half Dollar 13,696,000 N/A $9.00 $11.00 $25.00
1952 Franklin Half Dollar 21,192,093 N/A $9.00 $11.00 $14.00
1952-D Franklin Half Dollar 25,395,600 N/A $9.00 $11.00 $14.00
1952-S Franklin Half Dollar 5,526,000 N/A $12.00 $17.00 $50.00
1953 Franklin Half Dollar 2,668,120 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1953-D Franklin Half Dollar 20,900,400 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1953-S Franklin Half Dollar 4,148,000 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $25.00
1954 Franklin Half Dollar 13,188,202 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1954-D Franklin Half Dollar 25,445,580 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1954-S Franklin Half Dollar 4,993,400 N/A $12.00 $14.00 $16.00
1955 Franklin Half Dollar 2,498,181 N/A $18.00 $22.00 $25.00
1956 Franklin Half Dollar 4,032,000 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1957 Franklin Half Dollar 5,114,000 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1957-D Franklin Half Dollar 19,966,850 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1958 Franklin Half Dollar 4,042,000 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1958-D Franklin Half Dollar 23,962,412 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1959 Franklin Half Dollar 6,200,000 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1959-D Franklin Half Dollar 13,053,750 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1960 Franklin Half Dollar 6,024,000 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1960-D Franklin Half Dollar 18,215,812 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1961 Franklin Half Dollar 8,290,000 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1961-D Franklin Half Dollar 20,276,442 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1962 Franklin Half Dollar 9,714,000 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1962-D Franklin Half Dollar 35,473,281 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1963 Franklin Half Dollar 22,164,000 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00
1963-D Franklin Half Dollar 67,069,292 N/A $9.00 $10.00 $14.00

*Source 2020 Red Book