» 1973 Half Dollar Error List & Value

1973 Half Dollar Error List & Value

1973 half dollar value

Did you know that even though the 1973 Half Dollar has been around for 50 years, it is still one of the rarest coins in circulation? Do you want to know why this is the case?

If your answer is yes, continue reading! But before you do, we need to warn you: this article contains a lot of other interesting information and details, so expect to also learn about the 1973 Half Dollar value, history, mintage, errors, design…Proceed with reading at your own risk!

1973 Half Dollar Value Chart

Mint Mark Good Average Circulated Brilliant Uncirculated Proof PR(65)
1973 No Mint Mark Half Dollar $0.11 $0.50 $3.40 N/A
1973 D Half Dollar $0.11 $0.50 $3.40 N/A
1973 S (Proof) Half Dollar N/A N/A N/A $6.12


1973 No Mint Half Dollar Value

1973 No Mint Half Dollar Value
Image Credit: usacoinbook


The history of this version of Half Dollar began just a few hours after the 35th president of the United States of America, John Fitzgerald Kennedy, was assassinated on 22nd November 1963 since US Mint officials wanted to immortalize the former president with a depiction on a silver coin.

Only 4 days after these talks, the project was approved, and Jacqueline Kennedy, the late president’s widow, said that she would like Kennedy to be portrayed on the half dollar to take the place of Benjamin Franklin instead of replacing George Washington on the quarter dollar.

The Half Dollar, or Kennedy Half Dollar as it is popularly known, became available for buying on 24th March 1964. However, it was rarely seen in circulation for two reasons.

The first is that many people bought the Half Dollar so they would own a physical memory of the former president.

The other one concerned silver and its rising prices. Since the first version of the Kennedy Half Dollar was struck in 90% silver, some folks purchased the coin so they could melt and sell it in the future.

Although the US Mint changed the composition to 40% silver and 60% copper in 1965, they never truly solved the problem of the Kennedy Half Dollar shortage, which is still being minted today.


As you can probably guess, the obverse of the 1973 Half Dollar features a portrait of the assassinated US President John Kennedy.

The designer of the obverse was Gilroy Roberts, a sculptor who, from 1948 to 1964, was the Chief Engraver of the US Mint.

The left profile of Kennedy, which is depicted on the obverse, is actually a modified version of the portrait Roberts did when he was designing Kennedy’s medal for the US Mint’s Presidential series.

The obverse also features the inscription LIBERTY along the top rim of the coin, the year of mintage, 1973, along the bottom one, the writing IN GOD WE TRUST in the bottom half of the coin, and the designer’s initials in the form of a monogram in the neckline cut-off.

Lastly, the mint mark on the coins struck in San Francisco and Denver appears on the bottom half beneath Kennedy’s neck and above the mint year.

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Frank Gasparro, Roberts’ successor at the US Mint as the Chief Engraver, designed the reverse of the Kennedy Half Dollar.

Similarly to Roberts, he modified the existing design of the reverse he had done for the US Mint Presidential Series medal of John Kennedy.

The reverse has 3 major elements: the US presidential seal in the center, writing UNITED STATES OF AMERICA running along the top edge of the coin, and the denomination, HALF DOLLAR, on the bottom one.

A minor but important element is the designer initial’s located between the eagle’s tail and left leg.

1973 No Mint Half Dollar Mintage & Value

The mintage of 1973 No Mint Half Dollars struck in Philadelphia was 64,964,000 pieces. This figure is one of the lowest figures when it comes to Half Dollar production in the 70s in Philly.

As you could have seen from the value chart, 1973 No Mint Half Dollars are not that valuable. It is the reason why people still prefer to use them as a souvenir that reminds them of one of the most likable presidents in US history.

The melt value of this coin in good condition will earn you around 10 cents which is why it is probably better to just keep it in your pocket or drawer. In the average circulated state, it is worth its face value – 50 cents.

When it comes to 1973 No Mint Half Dollars that are uncirculated, i.e., mint state 63, they are worth almost 3 and a half dollars, which is still not a lot of money.

Taking a look at some of the most famous auctions, we find out that these coins do not bring a lot of money. The highest three prices that it was ever sold for are $299, $288, and $282. All three coins were in MS67.

If you manage to get your hands on one that is MS68 or above, well, you would probably be able to make some decent money, but unfortunately, 1973 No Mint Kennedy Half Dollar in that state is quite rare.

1973 D Half Dollar Value

1973 D Half Dollar Value


Those of you who closely looked at the value chart or read the previous section might have noticed that the melt value of the Kennedy Half Dollar is kind of low. After all, we said that it is made out of 40% silver. Well, that was the case from 1965 until 1970.

Starting in 1971, the US Mint began producing these coins without any silver – the Half Dollar’s outer core was 75% copper and 25% nickel clad, while the center was made out of 100% copper. By doing this, they wanted to reduce the cost of making the coin.

They also greatly increased the mintage, hoping that the combination of the increase and the aforementioned composition change would bring back the Kennedy Haf Dollar into circulation.

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Half Dollar’s almost complete disappearance is perhaps best illustrated by the fact that certain banks were not accepting it anymore in their machines since they removed its slot.

Although some increase in usage was seen after these changes, it was nowhere near where the Mint hoped it would be. Even today, the situation has not changed, as Kennedy Half Dollar is seldom seen in circulation.

Other Features

Let’s talk about 1973 Half Dollar’s other features. This coin weighs 0.400 ounces (11.34 g) and has a diameter of 1.204 inches (30.61 mm). Its thickness is 0.084 inches (2.15 mm).

Since 1973 Half Dollar has been a denomination worth counterfeiting, it has a reeded edge instead of a plain one. Incorporating reeds or letters into the coin’s edge is an anti-counterfeit measure. The number of reeds this coin has is 150.

1973 D Half Dollar Mintage & Value

In 1973, 83,171,400 Kennedy Half Dollar coins were struck with the mint mark “D”. Even though this number can be considered high and is higher than the number of coins produced at the mint in Philly, it did not particularly affect the value of the coin in most categories.

In fact, the 1973 D Half Dollar is worth the same as the 1973 No Mint Half Dollar in good, average circulated, and brilliant uncirculated states.

However, it is more expensive when we are talking about mint states 62 and above. For example, the auction record for this coin is $1,704, which happened in January 2013. Interestingly, the grade of the auctioned coin was not MS67 or higher but 62.

Records from other auctions tell a similar story since there are many coins that were bought for more than 300 dollars, which is definitely not the case with the No Mint mark specimens.

1973 S Half Dollar Value

1973 S Half Dollar Value

1973 S Mintage & Value

The proof coins for Kennedy Half Dollar started being struck in San Francisco the same year when the production of the coin began, in 1964. Since 1968, proof specimens for all US coins have been produced in this mint.

Since they are minted in San Francisco, these coins feature the mint mark S.

The mintage of 1973 S Half Dollars was 2,760,339 coins.

This amount is around the average for Half Dollar’s proof production since they were being minted in a range from around 2 million up to 4 million for a long period of time. It was only after 40 years, in 2004, that the mintage first dipped under 2 million and in 2012, under 1 million.

As you probably know, proof samples have the highest quality of all coins because they are specially designed for collectors and are not intended for circulation. Due to these same reasons, you can only find them in pristine condition, and they are much more valuable than the “regular” ones.

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The 1973 S Half Dollars are worth around 6 dollars. On auctions, they easily reach hundreds of dollars in value and, in some cases, even thousands. Two of the top prices for this type of coin are $4,888 and $4,370.

1973 Half Dollar Grading

Yeah, 1973 Half Dollars will not make a lot of people rich, but they are still worth something, which is why it is worth finding out what their value is. And to do that, you have to learn how to grade them. How will I do that, you might ask? Watching this video!

Rare 1973 Half Dollar Error Lists

The 1973 Half Dollar coin has a few mistakes that we will mention in the following sections. As always, though, we provide a video for anyone wanting to learn more about mint errors!

1973 Half Dollar Double Die Obverse Error

1973 Half Dollar Double Die Obverse Error
Image Credit: ebay

Double die errors are strangers to no coin or coin collector, and things are no different with the 1973 Half Dollar. This error can be noticed in 1973 D Half Dollars, especially around and on the letters and numbers.

It is a somewhat valuable mistake since one specimen that was in MS was sold for almost 450 dollars.

1973 Half Dollar Cud Error

Coins with cud errors will have blob-like damaged areas around their rims and some parts of the inner circle. You will find this error on the 1973 Half Dollars’ reverse in the bottom half, covering the “19” part of the minting year.

A coin with this mistake that was not in particularly great condition was purchased for more than 200 dollars.

1973 Half Dollar Double Struck Off-Center Error

1973 Half Dollar Double Struck Off-Center Error
Image Credit: robpaulsenlive

Two is almost always better than one, and that is certainly the case with mint errors. The double-struck off-center error refers to a situation in which a coin is struck by a minting press but remains partially stuck between the dies and is struck again with an off-center strike.

Since this is a rare error, coins that do have it are usually worth a lot of money, which is definitely true for one 1973 S Half Dollar sold for more than 15,000 dollars at auction.

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1973 Half Dollar FAQ

What makes a 1973 Half Dollar rare?

The 1973 Half Dollars are hoarded to this day since they feature a portrait of the former US President, John Kennedy which is why it is kind of hard to find even regular specimens in circulation.

The 1973 S Half Dollars, i.e., the proof coins, can be considered somewhat rare since they were produced in much fewer numbers than the business strike coins.

Truly rare 1973 Half Dollars are the ones with errors (double die obverse error, cud error, double struck off-center error, etc.).

Are 1973 Half Dollars worth anything?

1973 Half Dollars with No Mint and D marks are worth 11 cents when melted. Circulated versions are about 50 cents, while uncirculated ones are worth over 3 dollars. So, yeah, they are worth something, but not much.

Is a 1973 Half Dollar pure silver?

Only Kennedy Half Dollars that were pure silver are proof coins from recent years (2019 and onwards).

Circulation issues were never pure silver. The highest amount of silver that the Half Dollars contained was 90% in 1964. In 1973, they were made of three-quarters copper, one-quarter nickel clad (outer layer), and pure copper (core).

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