Money; it has always been around, even when it wasn’t in the same form as we know it today. People, even ancient ancestors, had to somehow purchase certain goods, and as we all know it, coins seem to be representative of this old purchase transaction. In all the historic books, movies, or series, gold or silver coins, in little pouches acting as wallets, were the main source of value items used to pay for something; you want to buy a chicken, you pay with the coins.
Nowadays, the money situation is a bit different; some of us don’t even use physical money anymore, everything we have is on credit and debit cards. But, this shouldn’t prevent us from learning about money history. In this particular article, we’ll learn a bit about the Liberty half dollars and the value of these coins, as it was in the past, and their value today. So, without further ado, let’s get started!
The 1944 Liberty Half Dollar – Everything You Need To Know
Overview and History
- Mintage: 28,206,000
- Minted at: Philadelphia (No Mint Mark)
- Designer – Engraver: Adolph A Weinman
- Metal Composition: 90% Silver – 10% Copper
- Diameter: 30.6 mm
- Mass / Weight: 12.5 grams
The Walking Liberty Half Dollar was designed by A.A. Weinman. The coin features Lady Liberty in a luscious appearance, wearing the American flag over her shoulders, her gown flowing, as she walks/gazes towards the rising Sun. On the coin, there is a motto that has survived on the one dollar currency even nowadays, In God We Trust, as well as the year of production, 1944.
The motto is placed on the right side of the coin, while the date is placed on the central, bottom part of the coin. All of the information and imagery on the coin are presented cohesively; everything seems in order and certainly represents the American history and the American spirit.
When we turned the coin to the other side, we see the continuation of the ‘American’ theme. We can see the American eagle sitting on a mountain top, with its wings outstretched. On the left side of the coin, right next to the eagle, we can see the Latin phrase, or motto to be specific, E Pluribus Unum. This motto was the one proposed for the first Great Seal of the United States by the Founding Fathers, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and Benjamin Franklin. This Latin phrase means ‘One from many’, and it shows the strong statement of the American determination to form a single nation made from a collection of many states.
At the bottom of this coin side, we can see the phrases ‘ the United States of America’, and ‘Half Dollar’, to showcase the coin value.
Before 1944, the demand for a half-dollar coin wasn’t really high. The low inflation rate, combined with the average consumer needs, leads to a limited half-dollar minting need. The Half Dollar coin was known for a lot of design and minting issues when it was initially created in 1916. There were millions of half-dollar coins struck across the country, and each coin was made of 90% silver and 10% copper. By the time it was minted in the 1940s, it has reached the perfect design and appearance.
1944 Half Dollar Value (How Much Is a 1944 Half Dollar Worth Today?)
The USA Coin Book has estimated the value of the 1944 Liberty Half Dollar coin to be $13 for a good condition coin. In very good condition, the coin is worth around $16. For an extremely fine half-dollar coin you’d get or pay around $19, while in an uncirculated condition, the coin is worth $35. For a brilliant condition, the coin’s value nowadays can go from $50 to $60.
But, how can one know whether the coin is in good or bad condition? Here’s a grading system used to reference and determine the condition and value of the coin;
- Good condition – this means the rims of the coin are still defined, and the motto ‘In God We Trust’ is clearly readable.
- Fine condition – the Lady Liberty image (especially her skirt lines) looks sharp. The motto on the front and the back side of the coin is clearly visible and readable.
- Extremely fine condition – the Lady Liberty’s gown lines are almost completely and clearly visible.
- MS 60 uncirculated – the coin is seemingly new, without signs of wear, abrasions, and surface marks (there may be a few, but still, the coin generally appears new)
- Brilliant condition (MS 63 uncirculated) – the coin appears completely new. There are no abrasions and surface marks, or blemishes. Everything on the coin is clear and defined, readable, and clearly visible.
The previously mentioned current half-dollar values are the ones established by the USA Coin Book. However, in reality, the cost of an extremely fine to brilliant condition half-dollar coin can vary between $500 and thousands of dollars. For example, the 1944 Liberty Half Dollar MS 68 uncirculated coin is estimated to cost up to $42,000.
Here’s a detailed overview of the half-dollar coin value, in accordance with the coin condition, for the collectors out there looking for more detailed information;
|1944 Half-Dollar Walking Liberty Value*|
|Quality||1944||1944 S||1944 D|
|Very fine||$11.6 to $12.6||$11.6 to $12.6||$11.6 to $12.6|
|Extra fine||$13.3 to $15.7||$14. to $25.9||$14 to $17|
|AU||$18.9 to $32.4||$29.70 to $48.6||$24.3 to $35.6|
|MS 60||$37.8 to $45.4||$50 to $60||$43.2 to $52|
|MS 61||$43.2 to $52||$53 to $63||$48. to $58|
|MS 62||$48.6 to $58||$59 to $71||$61 to $73|
|MS 63||$59 to $71||$68 to $81||$66 to $78|
|MS 64||$69 to $83||$101 to $122||$81 to $89|
|MS 65||$92 to $115||$234 to $269||$92 to $115|
|MS 66||$136 to $176||$390 to $448||$143 to $176|
|MS 67||$585 to $673||$14,400 to $21,000||$585 to $673|
|MS 68||$30,000 to $42,000|
How To Identify Real Liberty Half Dollar Coins?
If you’re looking to start a coin collection or you’re already a collector looking to get a Liberty half-dollar coin, this is the part you should not skip. Identifying a real, genuine half-dollar coin can be tough, especially to an untrained eye. Therefore, here are some things to look for when trying to identify a real, good-condition, Liberty half-dollar coin;
- Liberty half-dollar coins are rich in symbolism; you should pay attention to the mottos on both coin sides, the Lady Liberty appearance, as well as the eagle on the reverse side of the coin.
- Good-condition half-dollar coins do have some blemishes and signs of wear, but not so much that the symbols aren’t recognizable or that the mottos aren’t clear to read; if you’re not able to identify the symbols and mottos then do not purchase such coin.
- The designer of the Liberty half-dollar coin is Adolph A. Weinman, and his initials are on every single half-dollar coin. This is a telltale sign that indicates whether you’re looking at a genuine half-dollar coin or a fake one. Look for the initials right at the bottom of the eagle’s tail feathers (rim below the tail feathers).
- Half-dollar coins are made from 90% silver and 10% copper. That is why they are silver in appearance. If you notice the coin being darker, more copper-colored (yellowish, rusty color), you’re looking at a fake half-dollar coin.
How To Grade and Value Half Dollar Coins?
If you’ve ever wondered how people grade and value coins, you’re in for a treat. There are a plethora of factors that help coin collectors establish the right grade and value of every single coin, including the half-dollar one. Here are some of the things that need to be examined in order to establish a coin’s conditions, as well as its value;
- The Lady Liberty skirt lines and details – the greater the detail of the Lady Liberty skirt, and the finer the lines, the higher the price of the coin. In mint condition, the skirt lines are completely and clearly visible in their full glory, while in good condition, there is a sign of wear and blemishing on the skirt.
- The shine of the coin – half-dollar coins that have entered circulation usually show signs of wear and lack the original shine and luster. Mint condition coins are shiny and show no signs of smoothing from wear, therefore, the luster remains.
- The date under Lady Liberty – the date showcased on the front side of the coin, right under Lady Liberty, indicates the mintage date. The earlier the date, the higher the cost of a coin, considering the overall condition of the coin, of course. Some of the dates prior to the 1944 minting are super rare; for example, the 1921 half-dollar coins are super rare due to low mintage numbers.
- Circulated vs. uncirculated coins – Circulated coins generally show greater signs of wear, which lowers their price. Uncirculated coins show clearer, brighter, and more defined symbols, and mottos, and overall have a better, extremely fine, or brilliant condition, which respectively increases their value and price.
Note: Parts of the Liberty half dollar coin that show signs of wear include the high areas of the coin, like the Liberty’s head, right arm, skirt, eagle’s head (the part above the eye), eagle’s right wing above the head, feathers (especially on the chest), as well as mottos (the greater the wear, the harder it is to read the mottos due to lack of visibility and clarity between each of the letters).
Where Can I Purchase a Liberty Half Dollar Coin?
If you’re looking to purchase a Liberty half dollar coin for your coin collection, make sure to check out the following links;
- Uncirculated Liberty Walking 1944 MS64 coin
- Uncirculated 1944-S Liberty Walking Half Dollar MS64 coin
- Circulated Uncertified 1944-S Liberty Walking Silver Coin
- 1944-S Liberty Walking Half Dollar Ungraded Uncertified
- 1944-S Uncertified Ungraded Liberty Walking Half Dollar Coin
- 1944-S Liberty Walking Half Dollar Coin Uncirculated Ungraded
Hopefully, our insight into the history and current value of the 1944 Liberty Half Dollar coin has been informative and useful for all the interested readers out there. For more information consult the USA Coin Book and registered/reliable sources and coin collectors. The Half Dollar coin is such a valuable, interesting, and beautiful insight into American history that should be valued and cherished.