Part II of Kennedy Half-Dollar Retrospective

by Mike Unser on May 22, 2014 · 8 comments

The United States Mint this week published Part II of a four-part series about John F. Kennedy and the half-dollar coins honoring him.

Part II of Kennedy Half-Dollar Retrospective

This image shows a screenshot of the U.S. Mint website and the beginning section of the series discussing Kennedy’s military service and rise to prominence

2014 marks the 50th anniversary of the Kennedy half-dollar. The Mint’s online retrospective provides some history about the coin and discusses major aspects of Kennedy’s life.

Part I, Creating the Kennedy Half-Dollar, was introduced in late April. Part II, entitled the Military Service and Rise to Prominence, offers background on Kennedy’s World War II service and his early years in the House of Representatives and Senate.

"As we approach Memorial Day on May 26 and what would have been President John F. Kennedy’s 97th birthday on May 29, we shine the spotlight on his military service and early professional career-both of which played pivotal roles in his rise to prominence as one of the seminal political figures of his time," the U.S. Mint describes in the opening of the second-part series.

Later in the year, the U.S. Mint will offer 50th anniversary coin sets with special versions of the half-dollar. Highly anticipated is the release of a unique 24-karat gold Kennedy half-dollar with dual dates of 1964-2014.

Mockup Image of 2014 24K Gold Kennedy Half Dollar with date of 1964-2014

U.S. Mint mockup image of a 24-karat gold Kennedy half-dollar with dates of 1964-2014

Already available from the Mint are standard annual releases to include bags and rolls of 2014 Kennedy halves and uncirculated and proof sets with one or more of the coins in clad or silver. These products are offered online at www.usmint.gov/catalog.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

jim May 22, 2014 at 1:49 pm

I don’t know, this sure seems more about Kennedy than the coin. Not saying there shouldn’t be some kind of retrospective of the President but look at the heading of the part 2 document: Military Service and Rise to Prominence – what’s the coin got to do with that? After 50 yrs are they trying to justify the Kennedy replacement of Franklin on the half dollar?

Munzen May 23, 2014 at 1:55 pm

“After 50 yrs are they trying to justify the Kennedy replacement of Franklin on the half dollar?”
This is just one guy’s opinion, but it seems in hindsight that the Mint couldn’t have done a better job of destroying the denomination if they’d actively tried. I admit I was as guilty as anyone in saving some of the new coins as keepsakes, but multiplied by millions of people around the world the coins were vacuumed out of circulation. The Mint and Congress then made things even worse by continuing to mint halves from silver even when the 40%-clad ones were worth more as scrap. By the time they were converted to cupronickel the denomination had vanished from most cash registers.

jim May 24, 2014 at 10:05 am

That’s a question, not an opinion. I’m just saying the focus seems to have gone away from the coin and aimed at the man instead.
If the mint could only do the same thing with the penny…

Munzen May 25, 2014 at 11:31 am

I definitely hear you. Especially because politicians just can’t resist getting involved, the images (not to mention inscriptions) seem to be far more important than whether the coin itself is functional. For me the worst aspect is that each coin has developed a state-level constituency that resists any modification as “dishonoring” the person depicted. Remember the outcry from Virginia’s congressional delegation when the Mint first proposed new nickel designs for the L&C Bicentennial? I’m sure that Illinois would go ballistic over losing Lincoln.

Then again maybe that energy could be translated into putting Lincoln on a $2 coin. I’d personally prefer Teddy Roosevelt but I’ll accept what it takes to get us away from the wasted effort of making pennies and dollar bills.

dalereese May 27, 2014 at 7:47 pm

What no silver reverse eagle sets this year 2014 …hummm…

jim May 28, 2014 at 1:00 am

Don’t give up yet. While there’s been a lot of talk about the 50 year Kennedy it hasn’t shown up on the schedule either. Nor has any official announcement been made about changing the reverse of the silver eagle. It’s only the end of May…

also jim May 28, 2014 at 1:35 pm

What is the logic o the dates 1964-2014 – it seems to be a tribute to being assassinated for 50 years – since I believe he was killed by people within the govt, its kind of like them chuckling about 50 years of coverup. Its just weird, why not just have 2014 on it?

jim May 29, 2014 at 11:59 am

Once again, it’s about the coin, not the man or the President. The President was assassinated in 1963, the coin came out in 1964 hence 1964 – 2014. The bicentennial silver coins all had 1776 – 1976 (not just 1976) for the bicentennial so not a precedent.

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