½ Dollar New Rochelle

Features

Country United States
Period Federal republic (1776-date)
Type Non-circulating coin
Year 1938
Value 1/2 Dollar (0.50 USD)
Currency Dollar (1785-date)
Composition Silver (.900)
Weight 12.50 g
Diameter 30.60 mm
Shape Round
Number N# 79017
Numista (https://numista.com)
References KM# 191
Tracy L. Schmidt (editor); 2019. Standard Catalog of World Coins / 2001-Date (14th edition). Krause Publications, Stevens Point, Wisconsin, USA.
And 4 more volumes.

Commemorative issue

250th Anniversary of the Settlement of New Rochelle in Westchester County, New York

Obverse

John Pell with a calf.

Lettering:
¤ SETTLED · 1688 · INCORPORATED · 1899 ¤
GKL
NEW · ROCHELLE · NEW · YORK

Engraver: Gertrude K. Lathrop

Gertrude Katherine Lathrop (1896–1996) was an American sculptor, known for her medallion work and sculptures of small animals.

Reverse

Coat of arms of the city which represents a fleur-de-lis.

Lettering:
UNITED · STATES · OF · AMERICA
E · PLURIBUS · UNUM
LIBERTY
IN · GOD · WE · TRUST
1938
HALF · DOLLAR

Engraver: Gertrude K. Lathrop

Gertrude Katherine Lathrop (1896–1996) was an American sculptor, known for her medallion work and sculptures of small animals.

Edge

Reeded

Mint

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

Comments

The 1938 New Rochelle Half Dollar was one of several early commemorative issues that celebrated an event of primarily local significance with the issuance of a coin on a national scale. These coins were conceived and planned by the Westchester County Coin Club of New Rochelle, New York.

Initially, Lorrilard Wise was engaged to prepare the designs for the coin. Her first models featured a Native American crouching in the grass and watching a boat carry settlers to the shore on the obverse and the city seal on the reverse. The Commission of Fine Arts rejected the designs, recommending changes, which were executed and also rejected.

Eventually, Gertrude Lathrop, who had designed the 1936 Albany Half Dollar, was engaged to prepare new designs for the New Rochelle Half Dollar. Her obverse design would depict John Pell and a fatted calf, which recalls the sale of the original land upon which the city now stands. One of the conditions of the sale was for Pell or his heirs to receive a fatted calf each year on June 24.

The reverse design features the fleur-de-lis, taken from the seal of the city. Similar to the obverse, the single design element is presented in a flat and open field with sharply contrasting lettering.

Authorizing legislation provided that the coins should be dated 1938, without regard to when the coins were actually minted, and have a maximum mintage of 25,000 pieces. The Philadelphia Mint struck the entire amount in 1937, which were sold through the New Rochelle Commemorative Coin Committee for $2 each. Eventually, almost 10,000 pieces were returned to the mint for melting, resulting in a small net distribution of 15,266 coins.

Authorization: Public Law 74-556

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Date Mintage VG F VF XF AU UNC
1938  15 266 Philadelphia

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Numista Rarity index: 87 Search tips
This index is based on the data of Numista members collections. It ranges from 0 to 100, 0 meaning a very common coin or banknote and 100 meaning a rare coin or banknote among Numista members.

Bullion value: 9.17 USD Search tips
This value is given for information purpose only. It is based on a price of silver at 815 USD/kg. Numista does not buy or sell coins or metal.

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