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1963 Franklin Half Dollar Value (Rare Errors & “D“ Mint Mark)

1963 Franklin Half Dollar Value (Rare Errors & “D“ Mint Mark)

Since the US Mint minted Franklin half-dollars from 1940 to 1963, those struck in 1963 were the last in a series. Basically, their replacement was the result of President Kennedy’s assassination, and the new half-dollar appeared to honor his memory.

The 1963 half dollar value depends on each specimen condition, the mint mark, and variation. For instance, pieces with full bell lines are always worth more than regular coins, particularly if you look for proof-like or deep mirror-proof-like ones.

1963 Franklin half-dollar value Chart

Condition 1963 No Mint mark half-dollar 1940 D half-dollar
Good $10.30 $10.30
Very good $10.30 $10.30
Fine $10.30 $10.30
Very fine $10.30 $10.30
Extra fine $11.55 $11.55
AU $12 $12
Mint state 60 $14 $14
Mint state 65 $40 $47
Proof 65 $22 /

*by USA Coin Book

 

History of the 1963 Franklin Half Dollar

The US Mint produced the Franklin half-dollar series from 1948 to 1963 based on John R. Sinnock‘s design, but sculptor Gilroy Roberts finished the task after the primary designer passed away. The idea of putting the most beloved Founding Father on the coin obverse came from then-mint director Nellie Tayloe Ross.

She admired Franklin and wanted to add him to the list of famous Americans minted on coinage. Unfortunately, this American half-dollar series was the shortest after the Civil War.

Such shorting was not planned, but the minting was interrupted after the Kennedy assassination. Then, the US Mint started a new series in honor of the beloved 35th American President.

1963 Franklin half-dollar

Location Year Minted
Philadelphia 1963 No Mint mark half-dollar 22,164,000
Philadelphia 1963 proof half-dollar 3,075,645
Denver 1963 D half-dollar 67,069,292
Total / 92,308,937

Choosing Benjamin Franklin for the obverse made the coin undoubtedly popular from the very beginning. The only problem was the designer’s initials, JS, since many Americans believed they referred to former Soviet President Stalin.

Despite the popularity, this set is without rare and atypical pieces. On the other hand, it is an excellent opportunity for collectors on a budget and even novices to start a beautiful but affordable collection.

 

Features of the 1963 Franklin Half Dollar

Two engravers designed this beautiful coin in honor of one of the Founding Fathers. The Liberty bell symbolically shows the crucial American values from the founding of this great nation to the present day.

The obverse of the 1963 Franklin half-dollar

The obverse of the 1963 Franklin half-dollar

Image: wikipedia

The eighth Chief Engraver, John R. Sinnock, designed the 1963 Franklin half-dollar obverse with the Benjamin Franklin bust in the center. You can see the inscriptions IN GOD WE TRUST and LIBERTY along the coin rim and the DATE on the right.

The reverse of the 1963 Franklin half-dollar

The reverse of the 1963 Franklin half-dollar

American sculptor Gilroy Roberts helped Sinnock to create this complicated but beautiful coin reverse. The central position is reserved for the Liberty bell, surrounded by the country name and denomination.

The Latin motto E PLURIBUS UNUM, written in small letters, is placed on the left, while you can see an eagle on the right. Coins struck in Denver also have the D letter above the yoke, representing the mint mark.

1963 Franklin half-dollar

Face value 50 cents ($0.50)
Compound 90% silver and 10% copper
Silver weight 0.36169 troy ounces (11.25 g)
Coin weight 0.40188 troy ounces (12.50 g)
Coin thickness 0.07087 inches (1.8 mm)
Coin diameter 1.20512 inches (30.61 mm)
Edge Reeded
Shape Round

Other features of the 1963 Franklin half-dollar

The 1963 Franklin half-dollar is a silver round coin thick 0.07087 inches (1.8 mm). It contains 90% silver, meaning the 0.40188 troy ounces (12.50 g) heavy coin contains 0.36169 troy ounces (11.25 g) of this precious metal. The diameter of 1.20512 inches (30.61 mm) is unchangeable, thanks to its reeded edge.

 

1963 Franklin Half Dollar Value Guides

This year, two mints produced 92,308,937 Franklin half dollars. Atypically, most came with the D mint mark on the reverse, while those minted in Philadelphia are without it. Besides coins from the regular strikes, this mint also struck a certain amount of proofs.

1963 No Mint mark Franklin half-dollar

1963 No Mint mark Franklin half-dollar

Image: coinstudy

The Philadelphia mint wasn’t the one with the max mintage in 1963. It produced only 22,164,000 Franklin half dollars without the mint mark that year. Most pieces cost about $10 after years spent in circulation, while those in the mint state are worth $11 to $340.

Only highly graded specimens with an MS 67 rating cost $2,500 to $2,850 on the current market. As expected, those with full bell lines are even more expensive, and you should set aside an impressive $25,000 to $30,000 for such a coin in an MS 67 grade.

1963 Franklin half-dollar value

Condition 1963 No Mint mark half-dollar 1963 FBL No Mint mark half-dollar
Very good $9.80 /
Fine $9.80 /
Very fine $9.90 /
Extra fine $9.90 /
AU $10.40 /
MS 60 $10.90 to $15.90 /
MS 61 $10.90 to $15.90 /
MS 62 $11 to $16 /
MS 63 $13 to $21 /
MS 64 $20 to $28 $350 to $400
MS 65 $24 to $34 $1,300 to $1,500
MS 66 $293 to $340 $8,000to $13,500
MS 67 $2,500 to $2,850 $25,000 to $30,000

*by Greysheet

The most valuable 1963 Franklin half-dollar is the one sold at an auction in 2001 for $20,125. The specimen with full bell lines was four times more expensive. One collector paid $85,188 to get it at Legend Rare Coin Auctions in 2019.

1963 proof Franklin half-dollar

1963 proof Franklin half-dollar

Image: pcgs

Besides an impressive mintage, the Philadelphia mint struck 3,075,645 proof half dollars in 1963. These coins’ price is higher than pieces from the regular strikes, and you can purchase one for $17 to $350. Their value primarily depends on the preservation level.

1963 proof Franklin half-dollar value

Condition 1963 proof half-dollar 1963 CAM proof half-dollar 1963 DCAM proof half-dollar
PR 60 $18 to $20.50 / /
PR 61 $18 to $20.50 / /
PR 62 $18 to $20.50 / /
PR 63 $19 to $21.60 $21 to $25.20 /
PR 64 $19 to $22.80 $22 to $26.40 $25 to $30
PR 65 $20 to $24 $27 to $32.40 $40 to $50
PR 66 $22 to $26.50 $33 to $39.60 $65 to $90
PR 67 $28 to $33.60 $45 to $54 $180 to $250
PR 68 $55 to $66 $90 to $108 $350 to $550
PR 69 $290 to $348 $450 to $517.50 $3,850 to $4,500

*by Greysheet

Collectors particularly appreciate halves with cameo contrast, and these pieces typically cost $20 to $520. On the other hand, specimens with a deep cameo contrast can be expensive.

Most have a price range of $25 to $550. However, those with a PR 69 rating are worth about $3,850 to $4,500 on the coin market. One almost perfect 1963 PR 69 DCAM Franklin half-dollar achieved twice the price of the maximum estimated at an auction in 2018.

1963 D Franklin half-dollar

1963 D Franklin half-dollar

Interestingly, Denver was the center of the Franklin half-dollar minting in 1963. This mint produced 67,069,292 coins with the D mint mark but survived pieces still cost more than their face value.

Coins that have spent years in circulation typically cost about $10, while the price of uncirculated specimens varies depending on their condition. You can buy most pieces for $11 to $35, but those in an MS 66 grade are worth approximately $325 to $350. 

1963 Franklin half-dollar value

Condition 1940 D half-dollar 1940 D FBL half-dollar
Very good $9.80 /
Fine $9.80 /
Very fine $9.90 /
Extra fine $9.90 /
AU $10.40 /
MS 60 $10.90 to $15.90 /
MS 61 $10.90 to $15.90 /
MS 62 $11 to $16 /
MS 63 $13 to $21 $20 to $25
MS 64 $20 to $28 $40 to $50
MS 65 $24 to $34 $120 to $175
MS 66 $326 to $350 $650 to $800
MS 67 $3,000 to $3,450 $12,500 to $15,000

*by Greysheet

The most expensive are halves with an MS 67 rating and an estimated price of $3,000 to $3,450 on average. Specimens with full bell lines are even more pricey, and collectors are prepared to set aside $12,500 to $15,000 for such pieces.

The most expensive 1963 Franklin half-dollar is the one with full bell lines, sold for $16,800 in 2019 at Heritage Auctions. Five years earlier, one beautiful specimen from the regular strikes was paid $7,344 at the same auction.

 

1963 Franklin Half Dollar Variations and Errors

Besides Franklin half-dollar variety with full bell lines that is actually not an error but a perfectly struck coin, you can recognize a few well-known errors. They are not particularly common among coins minted this year but are always valuable.

Full-bell lines

You can sometimes find beautiful Franklin half dollars with full horizontal lines on the Liberty Bell and fully struck details on the coin reverse. These pieces are rare and highly collectible. In most cases, they cost at least 50% more than regular pieces.

Remember that all horizontal bell lines need to be distinct to qualify a particular coin as an FBL piece. When these lines are incomplete, the coin is considered a regular strike.

Bugs Bunny

The Bugs Bunny Franklin half-dollar is the most recognizable error struck this year. It is an atypical and rare die clash error that resulted in Franklin with two buck teeth.

Compared to pieces with significant imperfections from some other years, these from 1963 are not particularly pricey. However, they are always worth more than coins from the regular strike. The auction records for such specimens are about $500.

Double mint error

The 1963 Franklin half-dollar with such an error was struck on the wrong planchet with an additional reverse mirror brockage. This imperfection combines two mint errors, making these coins expensive.

 

FAQ about the 1963 Franklin Half Dollar

What makes a 1963 Franklin half-dollar rare?

Franklin half dollars with specific Bugs Bunny and Double mint errors are unique and pretty rare. Therefore, you can expect them to be costly in the current coin market.

Which 1963 Franklin half-dollar is worth a lot of money?

  • The 1963 MS 66+ FBL Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2019 when it sold for $85,188 at Legend Rare Coin Auctions
  • The 1963 MS 66 Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2001 when it sold for $20,125 at Heritage Auctions
  • 1963 D MS 67+ FBL Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2019 when it sold for $16,800 at Heritage Auctions
  • The 1963 PR 69 DCAM Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2018 when it sold for $9,000 at Heritage Auctions
  • The 1963 D MS 63 Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2014 when it sold for $7,344 at Heritage Auctions
  • The 1963 PR 69 Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2020 when it sold for $3,240 at Heritage Auctions
  • The 1963 MS 66 Obv Die Clash Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2020 when it sold for $1,400 on eBay
  • The 1963 PR 69 CAM Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2010 when it sold for $1,299 on eBay
  • The 1963 MS 65 DDR Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2020 when it sold for $1,080 on eBay
  • The 1963 MS 64 Bugs Bunny FBL Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2019 when it sold for $532 on eBay
  • The 1963 MS 64 Bugs Bunny Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2022 when it sold for $471 on eBay
  • The 1963 MS 64 Obv Die Clash FBL Franklin half-dollar won an auction record in 2018 when it sold for $400 on eBay

How much is the 1963 No Mint mark Franklin half-dollar worth?

Most 1963 Franklin half-dollars minted in Philadelphia are worth $10 to $340, but pieces in the highest grades can be worth almost $3,000. As expected, coins with full band lines are even more costly, and you should set aside $8,000 to $30,000 for the top-notch specimens.

What is the most pricey Franklin half-dollar?

Most people heard about the 1950 Franklin half-dollar worth $39,600 and the 1952 Franklin half-dollar sold for $42,300. However, they were not the most expensive pieces on the market. One collector paid $129,250 for the 1958 Franklin half-dollar in 2018, making it the auction record winner.