The United States Mint’s half dollars are, without question, the most memorable of its coins. Even if you’re not planning on investing your money wisely, this 1963 Franklin Half-Dollar is the only coin that pays tribute to Benjamin Franklin and his important role in American history, which can be found for $12 for an average example or up to about 58 cents on certified mint state (MS+) examples.
If we were talking solely based on melt value, then there would also have been another type: In fine condition, this piece costs $12, while an MS+ can sell up to 58 dollars depending on its grade level (90% silver + 10%). However, given how complicated things get when considering all elements involved, including design.
The Franklin 1963 Half Dollar – Values, Origins, and Quality
Designed in tribute to Franklin, this coin displays the picture on the front and a liberty bell on the reverse. The currency is named after the legendary politician and founding father.
This page discusses the half dollar’s history, notable characteristics, the Mint’s origins, and commonly asked questions. Additionally, we assist you in determining the quality of your coin by physically inspecting its exterior surface.
The 1963 Franklin Half Dollar: The Signature Piece of American History
The 1963 Franklin Half-Dollar is a silver currency issued for circulation by the US mint. It features an image of Benjamin Franklin on one side and Independence Hall, with its bell tower visible just below its roofline – both iconic symbols from American history.
The coin also has Reverand John Hancock’s signature at the bottom right, which can be found next to President Lincoln himself when thinking about whom else was likely involved or partook during this historic time period known as The Civil War between 1861-1865.
The Walking Liberty Half Dollars were produced by the United States Mint before the Franklin a half dollar. The Walking Half Dollar was changed without a congressional act from the United States Mint. However, due to the continuing Second World War, they could not implement their plan to modify the walking dollars.
The Franklin Half Dollar, the Key to Economic Mobility
John Sinnock, the head engraver at the United States Mint, was responsible for designing the initial specimens of the Franklin Half Dollar. Unfortunately, he passed away, and his assistant took over the project and saw it through to the end. In 1948, the United States Mint issued the first half-dollar coin featuring the portrait of Benjamin Franklin, which was minted in Philadelphia.
The Half Dollars became the key economic engine in the country since they were freely circulated across the country. Only a few people collected the silver coin for its numismatic worth despite this. It lacked a visually appealing glossy design.
The 1963 Franklin Half Dollar’s Controversial Mintage
The race for the Half Dollars concluded on November 22, 1963, when the last coin was struck. President John F. Kennedy was shot and killed during a funeral procession in Dallas, Texas, by an assassin. The country entered a state of mourning, with public parks, streets, and structures being renamed in honor of the deceased hero.
Following the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, the United States government decided to pay tribute to the president who had been assassinated. As a result, the United States Congress decided to immortalize Kennedy on the Franklin Half Dollar. In 1964, the United States Mint issued the Kennedy Half Dollar, thereby ending the production of the Franklin Half Dollar.
On the other hand, some numismatists kept the new rolls of uncirculated Franklin Half Dollars in their collections. Because of these coins’ high silver melt value, they are quite valuable today. Uncirculated Franklin Half Dollars are still in high demand among coin collectors.
The Purpose of Minting
The Benjamin Franklin Half Dollar creation was a gesture of respect for the founding father. Nellie Tayloe, the former director of the United States Mint, had the Half Dollar in mind previously. She appreciated the way Benjamin Franklin conducted himself as a leader. Consequently, she directed that the head engraves at the Mint develop current ideas for the Half Dollar.
Based on an ancient statue of Benjamin Franklin, John R. Sinnock created the first half dollar, which was issued in 1948. The coin’s reverse side featured a huge Liberty Bell, similar to the design on the 1926 Half Dollar.
“The Mintage of Half Dollars: 1963”
The United States Mint produced a record-breaking 90 million coins of the half dollar series in 1963. The goal was to fill the void left by bullion investors who had amassed a large collection of silver coins. As a result, the year was the most productive in terms of the half dollar. Mining took conducted in the Philadelphia Mint’s main facility and a Denver branch facility. Half dollars were struck at the Philadelphia mint 22,164k times, while half dollars were produced at the Denver mint 67,069,292 times.
The Franklin 1963 Half Dollar’s Value: Determined By Several Factors
Franklin Half Dollars have a lesser worth when they are distributed. However, the value may fluctuate due to a variety of variables. What elements contribute to the Franklin 9631 Half Dollar’s value?
- Completed Bell Line
Coin collectors have always prioritized Franklin Half Dollars with entire bell lines. A half-dollar with a complete bell line depicts complete horizontal lines flowing across the Liberty bell. Uncirculated, entire bell line half dollars are extremely rare and hence quite valuable.
Franklin half dollars with a full bell line are worth 50% more than regular half dollars. A certain entire bell line half dollars may even be more expensive in unusual circumstances. A complete MS 65 Franklin half bell line is worth $15,000.
- Franklin 1963 Half-Errors
Almost every coin series contains mistakes in the minting process, and the Franklin half-dollar is no exception. The appearance of an erroneous coin is distinct from that of similar coins of the same grade and kind. The 1963 edition has fascinating but uncommon mistakes that coin collectors desire. Remember that off-center strikes die cracks, numerous strikes, and punched mint markings are possible. An erroneous half-dollar coin is worth at least $75.
Coin collectors are looking for uncirculated half dollars with a high value. Therefore, if you want to maximize the value of your coin, ensure that it is a high-grade collectible. Professional grading agencies employ a rigorous technique for determining the authenticity and metal composition of a Franklin half-dollar. This result represents the coin’s grade. The greater the grade, the higher the price in numismatic markets. The following are the specifications for grading the 1963 Franklin Half Dollar.
- Uncirculated Grade
A closer analysis of your half-dollar reveals that it is in overall outstanding shape for an uncirculated coin. This coin’s surfaces are flawless and maintain their original brilliance. When your money is tilted and rotated in the light, it reveals a shimmering strip across both sides. Additionally, Franklin’s chin, collar, and shoulder are unmarked.
- Exceptionally Fine Grade
To get this grade, your coin must be in overall good condition with minor surface wear. It may contain small errors in the text and graphics and a tiny loss of color. Regardless, the coin should seem brand new and gorgeous.
- Fine Grade
Due to regular circulation, the surface of a good grade Franklin half-dollar exhibits substantial to wear. The text, photos, and borders are all damaged. It is generally in excellent condition if you cannot identify the coin’s details without a magnifying lens. A superb half dollar is desirable only if it is a one-of-a-kind rarity.
- Good Grade
The lowest grade for the 1963 Franklin Half-Dollar exhibits extensive deterioration to the coin’s surface, edges, wording, and pictures. Without visual help, this grade cannot define the characteristics of a half dollar. A Franklin half-dollar in high grade is only worth its melt value.
Ben Franklin a half dollar: A Final Tribute to America’s Most Famous Inventor
The final tribute to America’s most famous inventor, Benjamin Franklin, is the 1963 Half Dollar. Featuring 90% silver and his portrait on one side of this coin – it has an authorized designation that guarantees it’s worth tens or even hundreds in very fine conditions. For questions about how you can grade your pieces? Contact us for help grading modern coins and those from years ago when they were still being made at mints around town.
Thomas Boseman is the author of Pawnbroking.com. A pawn shop owner by day, blog writer by night. When not writing, he enjoys exploring the outdoors with his dog, Roman. Thomas received his bachelor of arts in film from the University of Arizona. A Brooklyn native, Thomas is a lover of filmmaking, motorcycle, and coffee.