Coin Specifications

Category: Barber Half Dollars (1892-1915)
Mint: San Francisco
Mintage: 1,686,411
Obverse Designer: Charles E. Barber
Reverse Designer: Charles E. Barber
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 12.5000g
ASW: 0.3617oz
Melt Value: $8.32 (9/26/2020)
Diameter: 30.6mm
Edge: Reeded
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1899 S 50C MS obverse 1899 S 50C MS reverse
Images Courtesy of Heritage Auctions (HA.com)
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Description & Analysis

This issue is moderately scarce in all grades. Most circulated to the point where they grade Good at best, and problem-free examples in the popular grades of F through VF are particularly elusive. Due to the unique chapter in American history, there is an abundance of coins Details grading AU and MS. There are the Philippine export pieces sent to that archipelago following the Spanish-American war for the use of both occupation forces and the indigenous population. These circulated just a few years before an entirely new series of Philippine coins debuted in 1903. Hoarded by the locals as good silver, the half dollars dates 1898-S, 1899-S and 1900-S were mostly repatriated after World War II, by which time they'd become quite deeply toned. Most were then improperly cleaned, leaving a fairly small population of coins that receive numeric grades.

Mint State survivors fall into the category of ex-Philippine coins that are either Details graded or at the low end of MS grading. The small number of gems are pieces which have come from other sources, most likely specimens obtained by collectors directly from the mint in 1899. That practice is well documented, though few availed themselves of that opportunity at the time.

Varieties are limited to date and mintmark positions, though this issue is known with either the S mintmark of 1892-98 (sharp serifs) or the new one introduced this year (slightly rounded serifs). There seems to be little interest by collectors in securing both varieties.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 9/25/2020

Click on a price to see historical prices, comparison charts and trends.

1899 S 50C MS
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 40.00 60.00 120 200 315 430 475 635 800 900 1125 1395 2450 3250 5000 10100 17500 50000 - -
$ - - - - 850 - - - - - 6500 12000 - -

NGC Price and Value Guides Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The prices listed in the various NGC Price and Value Guides are compiled from a number of independent, third party sources in the numismatic community which NGC believes to be reliable. Prices provided are averages, not specific prices for individual coins. Further, because these prices are only updated from time to time, they do not reflect short term pricing trends, which are quite common and are often quite dramatic, given the volatile nature of the collectible coin marketplace. This is especially true for rare coins, where there are fewer sales and greater variations in sale prices. For all of these reasons, the prices in these guides are designed to serve merely as one of many measures and factors that coin buyers and sellers can use in determining coin values. These prices are not intended, and should not be relied upon, to replace the due diligence and — when appropriate — expert consultation that coin buyers and sellers should undertake when entering into a coin transaction. As such, NGC disclaims all warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information contained in the NGC Guides. By using the NGC Guides, the user agrees that neither NGC nor any of its affiliates, shareholders, officers, employees or agents shall have any liability for any loss or damage of any kind, including without limitation any loss arising from reliance on the information contained in the Guides.

Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 149
Low Grade: PrAg
Average Grade: 53
High Grade: 67

The chart showing PrAg series, G series, VG series, F series, VF series, 40 series, 45 series, 50 series, 53 series, 55 series, 58 series, 60 series, 61 series, 62 series, 63 series, 64 series, 65 series, 66 series, 67 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 9/22/2020 1899 S 50C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base431391781098981471014483---149
-----------------------
----------------1-----1
-----------------------
Total431391781098981471014583---150
 3%2%9%6%11%5%7%6%5%6%5%1%3%5%7%9%3%5%2%--- 

NGC Registry

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NGC Auction Central Disclaimer

NGC Auction Central Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The auction prices realized listed in the NGC Auction Central are compiled from a number of independent, third party sources in the numismatic community which NGC believes to be reliable. The auction data listed by NGC may occasionally contain typographical or input errors that can result in incorrect prices realized appearing on the NGC website. Therefore, the prices realized listed in NGC Auction Central are designed to serve merely as one of many measures and facts that coin buyers and sellers can use in determining coin values. These prices are not intended, and should not be relied upon, to replace the due diligence and – when appropriate – expert consultation that coin buyers and sellers should undertake when entering into a coin transaction. As such, NGC disclaims all warranties, express or implied, with respect to the information contained in the NGC Auction Central. By using the NGC Auction Central, the user agrees that neither NGC nor any of its affiliates, shareholders, officers, employees or agents shall have any liability for any loss or damage of any kind, including without limitation any loss arising from reliance on the information contained in the NGC Auction Central.