Most 1917 half dollars have one of the highest market values. But how will you know the price of a 1917 half dollar that you are about to sell or collect?
Well, you are about to find out. We’ll talk about the 1917 half dollar value.
The US minted this coin to improve the lives of its citizens. Yes, firms no longer mint these coins, but many collectors love them.
Your coin’s mint firm and the grade are essential in rating the value. But other aspects also affect the 1917 half dollar’s value.
It’s easy to identify a 1017 half dollar when you see one. Before we get to that, let’s start with what a 1917 half dollar means.
What is the 1917 Half Dollar?
This type of the half dollar coin family came in the midst of World War I. It also has the name 1917 Walking Liberty coin.
Remember, the coins in this family replaced the Barber’s half dollars. The idea to change the look came from Robert Woolley. So, after that, Adolph A. Weinman’s art won the fine arts contest.
Adolph Weinman made the art on the coin’s reverse and obverse. It’s beautiful and rich with US history.
Many people across the US loved the beauty of the Walking Liberty coins. Now, read on to see the coin’s specs.
Specs of the 1917 Half Dollar
These coins have many traits that make collectors wish to have them. Remember, some specs are in the other half dollar coins. Still, some aspects also make the coin unique.
Weight, Color, and Size
Every good 1917 half dollar weighs 12.5 grams and is silver-white. The coins have a diameter of 30.6 mm.
It has 90% silver and 10% copper. Also, their silver bullion weight is 0.38169 oz.
You’ll see the Walking Liberty on the coin’s front as she stretches out her right hand. Her left hand appears to hold some branches.
There’s see the word “LIBERTY” that arcs from the center-left to the top and ends at the center-right. The legend “IN GOD WE TRUST” is on the coin’s bottom right.
At the bottom, there’s the year mark “1917.” A sun with sharp rays is on the coin’s bottom-left part.
The legend “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” arcs on top. Adolph designed the coin with a huge eagle that has open wings at the coin’s center. This bird is on top of a branch.
Also, the US motto “E PLURIBUS UNUM” is at the right under the letter “U” of the legend “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.” Expect to see the term “HALF DOLLAR” at the bottom.
Only two types of the 1917 half dollars have a mintmark. It shows the firm that struck these coins.
Some 1917 Walking Liberty coins have the letter mark on the reverse, while others have it on the obverse. It varies with the series of your coin.
Places that made the 1917 Half Dollar
Three US mints made the 1917 half dollars. All made 21 503 400 1917 half dollars. So, here is what to expect from each mint firm’s series.
The coins from this mint firm had no letter mark. Philadelphia mint made 12 929 000 coins.
This number was the highest among what the three mints made. So, expect them to be the most common.
Also, when in a good state, they have the lowest value among the three types. Many collectors still love them.
Denver mint made two types of 1917 half dollars. One series has the mintmark “D” on the reverse while the other has the mark on the obverse.
It made 765 400 coins with the D-mark on the obverse. The mint firm struck 1 940 000 with the mark on the reverse. Remember, these two series have different values.
San Francisco Mint
Half dollars from the San Francisco mint are also in two series. Like the ones from Denver, the difference is in the location of their letter mark “S.”
1917-S half dollars with the mark on the obverse were 952 000. As for the ones with the mark on the reverse, the San Francisco mint made 5 554 400 of them.
Why the US Minted the 1917 Half Dollar
In 1917, the US was still in World War I. So, these coins came to cushion the nation from the effects of this war.
It helped people to trade. US soldiers also used the 1917 half dollars.
The nation minted these coins to replace the Barber half dollars. These features like the branches on the coin’s reverse are a message of peace and hope.
Also, the 1917 half dollar has a deep message about the nation’s heritage. You’ll see this in the motto on the reverse, and the words “IN GOD WE TRUST” on the front.
Factors that Determine 1917 Half Dollar’s Value
Yes, the firm that made your coin will affect the value. But some other factors will determine your coin’s price and quality. So, keep reading to find out.
When your coin is among the ones that are tough to find, it has a high value. 1917 half dollars with many mint errors aren’t easy to find.
Also, the high-grade 1917 half dollars aren’t easy to find. Today, the 1917 Walking Liberty coins with the letter mark on the obverse are also hard to get.
Collectors focus more on your coins’ grade to gauge the value. This factor rates your 1917 half dollar’s current looks. You can let a collector grade a coin for you, but it will cost you.
Still, you can do rate with your eyes. Remember, it won’t give you a total estimate of your half dollar’s grade. So, here are the details of each grade.
A 1917 Walking Liberty coin has gone through many hands and decades of trade in this grade. It has many scratches and blemishes but still looks good.
Since the coin is much worn, the letterings and years are together with edges. Liberty’s image looks like an outline and not a portrait.
The sun is present, but the rays appear blunt. Good grade coins have a scale of 4. Here, the best feature that makes the coin sell is the silver value.
These coins have gone through many hands and have many blemishes. Though, some details are still present.
You’ll read the letterings and year well. Remember, they haven’t touched the coin’s rims. Liberty’s arm and branches are much present.
You won’t see Liberty’s gown and hand detail. The sun and Liberty’s portrait look flat. Coins in this grade have a scale of 12.
- Extremely Fine
After the firms minted these coins, they circulated for a short time. So, expect those in this grade to have more details and lesser blemishes.
Also, Lady Liberty’s gown has almost all lines. Here, your coin will have some light wear on the surfaces.
Most collectors desire to have such coins on their list. They are on a scale of 40.
After their mintage, these coins never went through many hands. They still look fresh and new.
These coins have all the features intact. They reflect with a lovely luster when you place them in light. Expect the scale to start from MS 50.
Uncirculated coins are costly because of their beauty and rarity. Also, you’ll need a magnifying glass to see the scratches present on these coins.
Value of the 1917 Half Dollar
A 1917 half dollar’s value primarily depends on its grade. This 1917 Walking Liberty has a face value of $0.50.
Also, it has a silver bullion value of $9.28. The metal price comes from the current silver spot’s value of 25.66 USD per ounce.
Every 1917 Walking Liberty from Philadelphia goes for 18 USD when it’s in a good state. If it’s uncirculated, you’ll pay at least $150.
The 1917-D coin with an obverse mintmark costs 25 USD if it’s in the lowest grade. Their least price in the uncirculated class is 800 USD.
Any good grade 1917-D Walking Liberty coins with the letter mark on the reverse costs around 18 USD. You’ll pay or get at least $1200 after the sale of this coin if it’s uncirculated.
When you sell the 1917-S with a letter mark on the obverse, the price for the one in good class is $27. Since the uncirculated ones are rare, they sell for at least 3250 USD.
1917-S half dollars in the good grade and with a letter mark on the reverse go for almost 18 USD. You’ll pay or get at least $700 for the sale of the uncirculated one.
Remember, these market prices are subject to change due to economic trends. So, this chart below gives detail of each type of 1917 half dollar and their price.
The 1917 Half Dollar’s Grade
|1917||$18||$19.50||$40||At least $150|
|1917-D on obverse||$25||$150||$240||At least $800|
|1917-D on reverse||$18||$85||$280||At least $1200|
|1917-S on obverse||$27||$375||$750||At least $3250|
|1917-S on reverse||$18||$140||$70||At least $1300|
The 1917 half dollars have a high market value. These coins come in many types depending on the mint firm and location of the letter mark.
1917 half dollars with mintmarks on the obverse are rare. It makes them have a high value in the coin market.
Adolph made the designs of both sides of the coins. Its features speak a message of patriotism to US citizens.
This half dollar came in to support the nation’s thrift from falling. It was during the World War I.
So, do you think these 1917 half dollars are worth their value in today’s market? Don’t be afraid to share your views.