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6 Most Valuable Kennedy Half Dollar Coins Worth Money

Are you interested in adding Kennedy half dollars to your coin collection? Do you have an uncirculated half-dollar that might be worth a lot of money? You’re in the right place! We’ve compiled a list of the most valuable Kennedy half dollars. While these coins are often common and inexpensive, certain key dates and conditions can make them very valuable. Let’s dive in!

History Of The Kennedy Half Dollar

The United States Mint first issued the Kennedy half dollar in 1964, shortly after President John F. Kennedy’s assassination. The coin, replacing the Benjamin Franklin half dollar, was initially made of 90% silver and 10% copper. From 1965 to 1970, the composition changed to 79% copper core with an 80% silver and 20% copper outer layer due to a copper shortage. Since 1971, the coins have been 75% copper and 25% nickel with a pure copper core.

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The design has remained the same, featuring President Kennedy’s left-facing portrait on the obverse and the heraldic eagle holding an olive branch and arrows on the reverse, symbolizing independence. These coins were minted in San Francisco, Denver, and Philadelphia. In 1964 alone, over 156 million half dollars were struck. Since 2002, the Mint has reduced production, making these coins primarily for collectors.

In 1992, the Mint began issuing special proof versions containing 90% silver. One notable variety is the 1964 “Accented Hair” coin, which had a more defined hair design initially disliked by Jacqueline Kennedy, leading to a redesign. The rarest and most valuable Kennedy half dollars are those struck from 1964 to 1970 in silver.

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Most Valuable Kennedy Half Dollars

1. 1964 Kennedy Half Dollar Special Strike

This is the rarest non-error example in the series. Distinguished by its satiny finish and sharp design details, this coin’s rims are exceptionally sharp and well-grounded. Only a dozen have been certified by the Professional Coin Grading Service (PCGS), with one graded SP68 auctioned for $156,000.

2. 1968 Kennedy Half-Dollar Proof

Minted in San Francisco, these coins are of superior quality compared to the 1964 proofs. A rare deep cameo specimen graded PF70 sold for $21,600 at a 2017 Heritage auction.

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3. 1964 Kennedy Half-Dollar Proof

The first proof in the series, struck in Philadelphia, these coins have an inferior finish. While cameo and deep cameo examples are rare, a PF70 graded example sold for $9,400.

4. 1964 Accented Hair Kennedy Half Dollar

This coin is notable for its extra hair detail above Kennedy’s ear and a missing serif on the “I” in “LIBERTY.” Less than 5% of the 1964 coins have this design. A deep cameo example graded PF68 was auctioned for $19,975.

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5. 1976 (D) Kennedy Half Dollar

Struck in Denver, these coins are common but rare in high grades. An MS67 or higher graded coin is exceptionally scarce, with a genuine example selling for $10,000 in 2021.

6. 1971 D Kennedy Half Dollar

The first year the coin composition changed from 90% to 40% silver. Common in circulated condition, the value increases significantly in high grades. An MS61 graded example sold for $13,000 in 2018.

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Conclusion

Kennedy half dollars are a fascinating part of American coin history, with certain editions being extremely valuable. Whether you’re a seasoned collector or just starting, keep an eye out for these rare coins.

FAQs

1. What makes a Kennedy half dollar valuable?

A Kennedy half dollar can be valuable due to its date, mint mark, condition, and special varieties. Coins from 1964 to 1970, especially those in silver, are often more valuable.

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2. How can I tell if my Kennedy half dollar is worth money?

Check the coin’s date, mint mark, and condition. Key dates like 1964 and certain varieties like the Accented Hair can be worth more. Professional grading can also help determine value.

3. Where can I get my Kennedy half dollar appraised?

You can get your Kennedy half dollar appraised by a professional coin dealer, numismatist, or grading service like PCGS or NGC.

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4. What is the most valuable Kennedy half dollar?

The most valuable Kennedy half dollar is the 1964 Special Strike, with one graded SP68 auctioned for $156,000.

5. Are all 1964 Kennedy half dollars valuable?

Not all 1964 Kennedy half dollars are valuable. Coins in mint condition or those that are special varieties like the Accented Hair can be worth more.

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6. How do I care for my Kennedy half dollar collection?

Store your coins in a cool, dry place. Use coin holders or albums to protect them from scratches and handling damage. Avoid cleaning the coins, as this can reduce their value.

7. What is a proof coin?

A proof coin is a specially made coin with a high-quality finish, struck using polished dies. Proof coins are often made for collectors and can be more valuable than regular coins.

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