Coin Specifications

Category: Seated Liberty Half Dollars (1839-1891)
Mint: San Francisco
Mintage: 1,160,000
Obverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Reverse Designer: Christian Gobrecht
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 12.4400g
ASW: 0.3599oz
Melt Value: $8.89 (10/24/2020)
Diameter: 30.6mm
Edge: Reeded
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1868 S 50C MS obverse 1868 S 50C MS reverse
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Description & Analysis

Both silver and gold coins circulated freely in the Far West, so the San Francisco Mint continued to crank out substantial quantities of half dollars year after year. This was a remarkable feat, as several published accounts survive that detail the wholly inadequate facility in which these coins were produced. A new mint would not go into service for another six years.

This issue is common across all circulated grades, but it is quite rare in full Mint State. Survivors may be found with full details from fresh dies, but most 1868-S halves reveal the die erosion and blurred denticles so typical of S-Mint silver coins during the 1860s.

Mint records indicate that eight obverse dies were shipped to San Francisco for this coinage. The original batch of reverse dies with motto shipped there in 1866 must have dwindled by 1868, as 12 new reverses were sent from Philadelphia. To date, eight die marriages are known from the combining of seven obverses and six reverses. The remaining reverse dies would have been held over for the following year, but, of course, all 1868-dates obverses had to be destroyed in 1869. A single collar has been identified, this having 140 reeds.

No fewer than three MPD (misplaced date) varieties are known for the 1868-S half dollar. These are little known among collectors, as the duplicate numerals are fairly well hidden within the denticles below the date, but they are sought by series specialists.

GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 6/25/2019

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

1868 S 50C MS
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ 60.00 60.00 120 135 300 360 385 600 675 1050 1250 1800 3000 4875 13000 22000 45000 - - -
$ - - - - - - - - - 5250 - - - -

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: 98
Low Grade: PrAg
Average Grade: 50
High Grade: 66

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.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 10/20/2020 1868 S 50C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base213191518568161252211----98
-----------------------
-----------------------
-----------------------
Total213191518568161252211----98
 2%1%3%1%9%15%18%5%6%8%16%1%2%5%2%2%1%1%---- 

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1868 S 50C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base114320125539568472582090810211239133314502087255534675316668511153177532849834170
481622193024916987578499461094127013721662224328594083577281741335321335303890
000000757849946109412701372166222432859408357728174133532133500
000000788879983116613021411187523993163470062299664155532491600
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: XF 45
Points: 725
Owner: crowhill collection
 
Grade: VF 30
Points: 395
Owner: 123cents
 
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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.