By Dan Duncan – Pinnacle-Rarities ……
The short-lived Proof model of the favored Strolling Liberty half greenback was discontinued throughout World Conflict II as metals had been scarce and the nation’s consideration was targeted on extra essential issues. In the course of the financial hardships that adopted the struggle, the United States Mint didn’t start putting proof coinage once more till 1950. These units featured the brand new Franklin half greenback and Roosevelt dime designs and had been instantly common among the many collectors.
The Roosevelt dime remains to be in use at the moment, however the Proof Franklins had been solely struck from 1950 to 1963. All had been offered for $2.10 within the annual Proof Units. Immediately the collection is without doubt one of the hottest trendy collection and every situation is obtainable licensed, making the collection a wonderful venture for novice and superior uncommon coin lovers alike. Fashionable inhabitants stories give us some wonderful insights into how high quality is dispersed throughout survivors, and so for our personal training and within the curiosity of collectors and buyers, we study the PCGS information in relation to the person 14 dates.
The Proof Franklin Half Greenback: Date by Date
1950 – The primary yr of situation has the bottom mintage for the collection. Nevertheless, it represents greater than double the manufacturing of the ultimate yr of the 1942 Walker. The result’s that many examples had been struck on overused dies and high quality suffered. Moreover, just like the ’40s-era units, the 1950 Proof Units had been offered with every coin individually held in a small cellophane sleeve. The group was stapled collectively and positioned in a cardboard field with tissue paper. These weren’t sealed and had been topic to gassing and moisture. The result’s that most of the survivors are hair-lined, noticed, or ugly toned. Cameos for the date signify lower than 10% of the graded inhabitants and Deep Cameos are extraordinarily uncommon. So far, PCGS has solely graded eight cash DCAM throughout all grades.
1951 – The second yr of manufacturing noticed a slight improve in mintage figures and a few enchancment in manufacturing high quality. Sprucing of used dies was achieved with extra frequency and many of the surviving cameos are a direct consequence. The inhabitants stories reveal that the general cameos stay just below 10% of graded examples, however the incidence of Deep Cameos will increase nearly 10-fold to over 70 cash presently in PCGS DCAM holders.
1952 – The manufacturing numbers had been elevated dramatically in 1952 to fulfill collector demand. The consequence was that most of the yr’s emissions had been from poorly executed planchets and closely polished dies. The general Cameo numbers improve, however surviving Deep Cameo numbers drop to simply 25.
1953 – In ‘53, general manufacturing was elevated to 128,800 to match demand. This was the ultimate yr of unique early poor packaging practices utilizing the brittle cellophane sleeves. Accordingly, the pop stories present a rise in general graded numbers and a rise in PR68 examples, with the primary PR69. The Deep Cameo inhabitants doubles from the earlier yr to ’53. That is nonetheless a minuscule quantity particularly contemplating the mintage determine improve.
1954 – The units from this yr had been packaged in each the cellophane sleeves and a brand new softer model. Mintage figures rose by over 100,000 units and the ensuing inhabitants information displays these adjustments. The cameo and deep cameo inhabitants signify thrice every of the primary two years and a 40% improve over the earlier yr. The survivors in PR68 jumps to just about 200 cash throughout all designations but stay elusive in PR69 with only one lone PCGS instance so far.
1955 – The Mint once more revised its packaging for the yr, with early units going into the softer sleeves and taped into packing containers just like the earlier years whereas the stability of units was sealed in pliofilm flat packs. All the set was sealed in a sheet of plastic just like the fashionable mint set. Mintage figures had been once more elevated by practically 150,000 whereas Mint State manufacturing for the yr dropped to the second-lowest for the collection. General PCGS populations improve accordingly and the yr has the primary PR69CAMs with two cash graded as such so far.
1956 – Throughout 1956, engravers on the Mint edited the design of the reverse on the half. The feathers on the eagle emblem had been strengthened, creating two varieties for the yr. The Sort One is scarcer general with simply over two thousand examples graded by PCGS throughout all grades and designations. This kind is extraordinarily elusive in Deep Cameo with a pop of simply 11 in all grades. However the Sort Two is pretty frequent with over 12 thousand examples in all grades and designations. It comes good with extra DCAM in holders than another date within the collection.
1957 – 1957 marks the primary yr that the overall Proof mintage topped one million cash. Regardless of over half one million extra cash initially produced than the earlier yr, the ‘57 Proof ranks second to the ’56 Sort Two within the general inhabitants. At present, PCGS has graded over 10,000 for the date in all designations. That is second for all dates within the ’50s, and behind the 1956 Sort Two in Cameo and Deep Cameo populations. It can be crucial for DCAM collectors to make use of diligence to acquire a real two-sided cameo instance.
1958 – That is the primary yr that Proof mintage figures went down since 1950. It’s possible attributable to a slowing U.S. financial system and a saturation of the collector markets. It is usually the primary yr for the looks of milk spots on the Proof halves. Throughout this yr, minting process seems to have modified, and the preparation of cash previous to putting left cleaning soap residue, leading to occasional spots. This is a matter that collectors ought to keep away from and it continues throughout the remaining points for the collection.
1959 – Demand and manufacturing for the yr jumped again to over one million units with the inclusion of the brand new Lincoln Memorial cent. Regardless of the upper mintage, the frequency of cameo distinction continues to say no as use and put on continued to take their toll on the grasp dies. That is no extra evident than within the Deep Cameo pop numbers with solely 23 cash graded DCAM for the yr. That is simply 20% of the 1958 DCAM inhabitants regardless of over 1 / 4 of one million extra cash being struck.
1960 – Dies had been reworked leading to a rise in Cameo examples and a particular sharper search for the collection till it’s discontinued in 1963. The 1960 Cameo Proofs typically supply extra field-to-device distinction on the obverse than the reverse. The obverse frost could be intense so the fanatic is inspired to attend for the correct look. With over 100 PR68DCAMs and 11 PR69DCAMs, there may be market saturation to please the astute collector that’s prepared to exhibit reasonable persistence.
1961 – The ultimate three years of manufacturing noticed mintage figures prime three million units. Regardless of this spike in manufacturing, the frequency of Cameos is decidedly much less. Regardless, Cameo and Deep Cameo examples could be had in grades as much as PR68, with Cameo-designated PR69s scarce. 1961 has the collection’ solely doubled die selection presently designated in PCGS inhabitants stories. The doubling is on the reverse and is clearly seen within the inscription HALF and the Motto and the cash are elusive. So far, no ’61 DDOs have been designated Deep Cameo.
1962 – The final two years of the problem are the most typical. The manufacturing high quality is excessive and collectors will be capable to find interesting choices with little downside. The Cameos from the yr function closely frosted units on each obverse and reverse, a departure from the mismatched dies of the last few years. Excellent gem and higher examples are available inside all designations and are supplied with little draw back at at the moment’s ranges.
1963 – The ultimate yr of Franklin half manufacturing once more noticed over three million Proof examples struck. Together with 1962, the yr represents the most typical for the collection with heavy market availability throughout all designations.
For the sake of simplicity, we’ve used the PCGS Inhabitants Report because the direct reference on this article. We acknowledge the data herein is topic to some variance with resubmissions and examples misplaced to attrition. It is very important notice that the NGC Census Information isn’t any much less essential, and in a side-by-side comparability, it seems to replicate related developments. With every firm’s report reflecting over 30 years of knowledge, they’re each beneficial instruments to acknowledge the general situation rarity of examples identified in at the moment’s market. The Franklin Proofs are thought-about trendy by many however have been extraordinarily common all through their existence.
The Proof cash of the period skilled large demand, early inflicting mintage figures to extend from 51,386 in 1950 to over three million by collection’ finish. The early points discovered Mint staff relearning the nuances of Proof putting inflicting the early years to be powerful in Deep Cameo. The dies had been reworked in 1956, creating the collection solely kind change, and the brand new dies created sharply contrasting Proofs with many Deep Cameo survivors. Subsequent years noticed put on to the grasp dies decreasing the frequency of Cameos till the dies had been once more reworked in 1960. The ultimate years of manufacturing are sharp and wealthy in Cameos. The manufacturing of Proof Units above the three-million-coin threshold has left loads of Gem and higher examples for at the moment’s collectors.