1964 Kennedy Half Dollar Sells for Record $108,000 at Heritage Auctions Event

by CoinNews.net on May 3, 2019 · 14 comments

A 1964 Kennedy Half Dollar sold for a world record $108,000, making it the most expensive coin of its type, during a public auction of rare U.S. Coins held Thursday, April 25, 2019, by Heritage Auctions.

1964 SMS Kennedy Half

This 1964 Kennedy Half Dollar, graded PCGS SP67 SMS, sold for $108,000 (Imaged by Heritage Auctions, HA.com)

The rare example of the rather common piece of pocket change is one of about a dozen special issues struck in 90 percent silver and 10 percent copper for special coin sets issued by the U.S. Mint during the mid-1960s.

The sale smashed the $47,000 previous world record price, set by Heritage Auctions in 2016. Both the seller and the winning bidder wish to remain anonymous at this time. Heritage Auctions presented the coin at an auction during the Central States Numismatic Society (CSNS) Convention just outside of Chicago in Schaumburg, Illinois.

"This is the ‘king of Kennedy half dollars,’" said Todd Imhof, Vice President at Heritage Auctions, the world’s largest auctioneer of coins and paper money. "It seems we were very successful in attracting all the right bidders to this modern rarity and collectors did not want to miss the opportunity to own one of the United States’ rarest Kennedy Half Dollars."

Special mint set coins are characterized by a better-than-average strike, the result of higher-tonnage coin presses than those used for coins intended for general circulation. The example sold at auction on Thursday is valued for its rarity as well as its unique, satiny surface condition.

Heritage Auctions (HA.com) is the largest fine art and collectibles auction house founded in the United States, and the world’s largest collectibles auctioneer. In addition to its headquarters in Dallas, Heritage has offices in New York, Beverly Hills, San Francisco, Chicago and Palm Beach, Paris, Geneva, Amsterdam and Hong Kong.

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Dave Sparks
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Dave Sparks

Is this an “error” coin? If I remember correctly, the special mint sets were issued from 1965 – 1967. Is this an SMS coin accidentally dated 1964?

Eugendicks
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Eugendicks

Yes this is an SMS has not been certified as an SMS but it is a SMS..

Munzen
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Munzen

Based on what I’ve read these coins are _not_ errors. Coin Week reports that a dozen SMS sets were made with 1964 dates and compositions. The reason for their creation isn’t known but it’s thought they were given to then-Mint Director Eva Adams. Their existence wasn’t known until shortly after Ms. Adams’ passing, which lends a bit of circumstantial credibility to the story.

Mr.Patlan
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Mr.Patlan

I also own a 1964 Kennedy Half-Dollar Coin and also 1 Bi-Centennial Eisanhourer Half-Dollar. How would I go about getting an estimate of their worth.?

JAN M FOX
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JAN M FOX

Mr. Patlan…you would have to know much more about either of your coins first; as for the ‘ 64 Kennedy, is it uncirculated? Proof? Is it an accented hair or type2? An error coin? They made Ike $ from 1971 – 1978… Clad & 40 percent silver…the bicentennial coin is in clad & silver… huge number minted…get a coin guide or numimatic magazine and perhaps you can learn more about your coins.good luck!

LoopholeLyle
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LoopholeLyle

Did you try Google?

Richard
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Richard

Sorry friend, there were 429 million ’64 Kennedy halves minted. The odds of getting one of these special issue pieces is microscopic. The Eisenhower dollar (not half) is, as mentioned below, is very common–220 million. A place to start is coinflation.com, which gives the value of circulating ’64 Kennedy coins as $5.40, and the 40% silver bicentennial Ikes (which were only issued in sets by the mint) as $4.72. Regular circulating ones are valued at $0.15 in scrap metal. As Jan Fox says you could have something special here, but you can see the odds are against it.

Amelia A Stevens
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Amelia A Stevens

I have several of those coins

joera
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joera

Are they graded PCGS SP67? If not, then they are not the same. Ungraded and circulated they are only worth the silver in them which is around $12.50 each. Depending on their condition. Uncirculated could be worth more.

Fred
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Fred

It’s only half ounce silver at 90% worth about 6 bucks

LoopholeLyle
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LoopholeLyle

No, you don’t.
You have the common, regular circulated version.
This is a special, rare variety.

Seth Riesling
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Seth Riesling

This type of coin with special striking is explained in the “Red Book” in the JFK half dollar section. A few were struck that had a specimen finish in 1964 instead of regular Unc. finish or Proof version. They used extra tonnage on the coin presses for a few coins, but no one knows why or how many were made this way in 1964 in all denominations. They call it the “SMS” version of 1964 because they appear just like the actual SMS sets of 1965-67 which are common sets. This coin is a true rarity & the auction price realized proves that.

NumisdudeTX

Chas Barber
Guest

A rarity to PCGS as being an SMS, has the NINT authenticated? I can hardly wait till they try to sell it for $200k…….

Kim
Guest
Kim

We have a few of the Kennedy half dollars but this one particular one is different than the rest. I has been uncirculated for about 20 years now. The I is shorter at the bottom and the hair does look accented. It has a beautiful satin finish to it. This is a beautiful coin.