½ Dollar Columbian Exposition

Features

Country United States
Type Circulating commemorative coin
Years 1892-1893
Value 1/2 Dollar = 50 Cents (0.50 USD)
Currency Dollar (1785-date)
Composition Silver (.900)
Weight 12.5 g
Diameter 30.61 mm
Thickness 2.15 mm
Shape Round
Orientation Coin alignment ↑↓
References KM# 117
  • Tracy L. Schmidt (editor); 2019. Standard Catalog of World Coins, 2001-Date (14th edition). Krause Publications, Stevens Point, Wisconsin, USA. ISBN 9781440248979.
  • Thomas Michael (editor), Tracy L. Schmidt (editor); 2016. Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1601-1700 (7th edition). Krause Publications, Iola, Wisconsin, USA. ISBN 9781440248573.
  • Thomas Michael (editor); 2016. Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1701-1800 (7th edition). Krause Publications, Iola, Wisconsin, USA. ISBN 9781440247064.
  • Tracy L. Schmidt (editor); 2019. Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1801-1900 (9th edition). Krause Publications, Stevens Point, Wisconsin, USA. ISBN 9781440248955.
  • Tracy L. Schmidt (editor); 2019. Standard Catalog of World Coins, 1901-2000 (47th edition). Krause Publications, Stevens Point, Wisconsin, USA. ISBN 9781440248962.

Commemorative issue

Columbian Exposition

Obverse

Portrait of Columbus facing right with the denomination below

Lettering:
*UNITED STATES OF AMERICA*
COLUMBIAN HALF DOLLAR

Reverse

The ship Santa Maria sailing to the left above 2 half planispheres that divides the date 1492 with a legend around the rim and the date below

Lettering:
WORLD'S COLUMBIAN EXPOSITION CHICAGO
14 92
*1892*

Edge

Reeded

½ Dollar (Columbian Exposition) -  obverse

© MiguelEmoovie

Mint

United States Mint, Philadelphia, United States (1792-date)

Comments

This coin was produced for the  World's Columbian Exposition that took place between the 1st of May to October 30, 1893, in Chicago, Illinois, which celebrated the 400th anniversary of the arrival of Columbus to America.

According to Tom DeLorey Coinage, May 2016, p. 9, the Columbian Exposition half-dollar "came about when the organization putting on the World’s Fair requested a grant from the U.S. Treasury of $5 million to help build the fairgrounds so it could open." The Treasury, however, gave "only $2.5 million due to the prevailing hard economic times." DeLorey goes on to say that someone "connected with the Fair Authority got the brilliant idea that if the Treasury would provide the $2.5 million in the form of five million commemorative half dollars," then the Fair would need only "to sell the coins for a dollar each" in order to obtain the extra $2.5 million dollars needed. Because of hard economic times, however, "only a few hundred thousand were sold at the premium, the rest were either released into circulation at face value or melted."

See also

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Date Mintage VG F VF XF AU UNC Frequency
1892  950,000 17.96 19.60 28.21 22.31 58.41 29%
1893  1,550,405 7.30 14.15 15.82 20.06 21.71 23.93 86%

Values in the table above are expressed in USD. They are based on evaluations by Numista users and sales realized on Internet platforms. They serve as a measure, but they are not intended to be relied upon for buying, selling or exchanging. Numista does not buy or sell coins or banknotes.

Frequencies show the percentage of Numista users who own each year or variety among all the users who own this coin. Since some users own several versions, the sum may be greater than 100%.

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