Preceded by the emblematic Walking Liberty half dollar and succeeded by the memorial Kennedy half dollar, the Benjamin Franklin half dollar remains underrated among 20th century types. However, its motif is perhaps a more significant symbol of our nation than either of those series.
With one of the most iconic founding fathers portrayed on the obverse and a symbolic relic of American independence gracing the opposite side, the Franklin half is a tribute to an integral era in our nation’s history. Historical significance is paired with liberal availability to create considerable demand among collectors today.
The 1950-D half dollar with Full Bell Lines may be considered a relative key-date of the series, approaching the elusive status most commonly associated with issues of the early 1960s. Like most mintages, both FBL and non-FBL pieces can be found up through MS-65 with very little effort. However, bag marks and roll friction limit the quantity of coins that truly exhibit preservation beyond Gem. From a mintage of just over eight million coins, PCGS has only certified 71 1950-D half dollars as MS-66, just 17 coins as MS-66+, and not a single coin finer. The present offering delivers the pinnacle of preservation.
The initial brilliance at the central obverse quickly reveals a sky blue shimmer at a tilt, haloed by subtle amber that becomes more colorful at the lower border. On the opposite side teal, emerald, tangerine and magenta iridescence softly pulsates upon rotation. The strike is very sharp throughout, with the requisite striations fully delineated and uninterrupted. Both the devices and fields are untouched and frosty, further contributing to the spectacular appeal of this Top-Pop piece.
This lovely jewel will be offered alongside a number of other rarities in our February 2016 Rarities Auction, held in conjunction with our third offering of the legendary D. Brent Pogue Collection. To consign your treasures to this sale or any our auctions, please contact our offices today at 1-800-458-4646 to speak with a Consignment Director and see what Stack’s Bowers can do for you.