Designed by John Sinnock in 1948, the obverse side of the Franklin Half Dollar features a portrait of the inventor and statesman Benjamin Franklin. This is the first coin in U.S. history meant for circulation that featured a real American rather than a symbol.
Franklin Half Dollar silver bullion coins were considered standard legal tender in the United States from 1948-1963. Approximately 500 million of these coins were minted in these years. One interesting fact regarding these junk silver coins involves the designer's initials. Due to the high tensions of the time, many thought the initials "JS" found on the Mercury silver dime stood for "Josef Stalin." Perhaps trying to avoid controversy, Sinnock inserted his middle initial – "JRS" – on the Franklin half dollar.
- Mint: US Mint
- Type: Bullion (Investment)
- Mintage: Minted annually between 1948 and 1963
- Silver Content: 90% silver 10% copper
- Diameter: 30.6 mm in diameter (1.2 in.)
- Thickness: 2.15 mm in thickness (0.09 in.)
- Weight: 0.357 troy ounce (12.5g)
- Face Value: $0.50
- Coin Highlights:
- Obverse features the profile of Benjamin Franklin - A Founding Father of the United States of America
- Reverse features the Liberty Bell
- Minted between 1948 and 1963 and served as legal tender
- This coin represents the first time in US coinage that an American that was not a president was featured on a circulation coin.
- These coins were minted in Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Denver.
Junk silver coins like the Franklin half dollar represents one of the easiest ways to invest in precious metals. These junk silver coins, classified that way because of their metal content and status as legal tender, are one way to start a precious metals portfolio. They're also great barter tools in the event of an emergency.