Coin Specifications

Category: Silver Commemoratives (1892-1954)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 25,000
Obverse Designer: Henry G. Kreis
Reverse Designer: Henry G. Kreis
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 12.5000g
ASW: 0.3617oz
Melt Value: $5.62 (4/10/2020)
Diameter: 30.6mm
Edge: Reeded
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1935 CONNECTICUT 50C MS obverse 1935 CONNECTICUT 50C MS reverse
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Description & Analysis

The Connecticut Tercentenary Half Dollar was struck in 1936 to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the founding of Connecticut. As opposed to many other commemorative issues which can only be described as money grab, this coin was actually well-thought out and designed to celebrate the anniversary. In fact, planning for the coin began in 1934, when the Tercentenary Commission was tasked with creating a coin to celebrate the anniversary. The bill was passed with minimal debate on June 21, 1934, and authorized the coining of 25,000 half dollars.

Local artist Henry G. Kreis, who also created the Bridgeport commemorative, was tasked with creating the designs for the coin under the direction of famed sculptor Paul Manship. This collaboration produced superb designs of a highly stylized character. Both the Charter Oak, with its bold, oversized leaves, and the monumental eagle, with its defiant expression, may be included among the finest elements to appear within the commemorative series. The Commission of Fine Arts gave provisional approval of the models, and after only a few minor changes, the final designs were approved.

The central element of the obverse is, of course, the famed Charter Oak. It is modeled after a painting by Charles DeWolf Brownell belonging to the Connecticut Historical Society and created just one year before the tree was toppled in 1856. IN GOD WE TRUST and LIBERTY are seen at the top of the coin, with THE CHARTER OAK beneath the branches of the tree, and CONNETICUT 1635-1935 below its roots. The reverse shows a stylized eagle, with UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and HALF DOLLAR around the periphery, and E PLURIBUS UNUM to the left of the eagle.

All 25,000 of the coins were coined in April and May of 1935. They were available well in time for the anniversary, and were sold to residents of the state as well as visitors to the celebration at $1 each. They were extremely well received and sold out quickly. In fact, the Tercentenary Commission’s executive secretary, Herbert L. Crapo, confessed to prominent coin dealer L. W. Hoffecker that “We have disposed of our entire original allotment of 25,000, and are having some difficulty in reserving a few which we want to present as gifts to dignitaries.” When the speculative market for commemorative coins heated up in 1936, this issue quickly rose in value to $6. By comparison, a proof silver dollar of the Seated Liberty design was then valued at only $5! The Connecticut Tercentenary Half Dollar, with it’s bold designs on both obverse and reverse, remains one of the most popular issues of the classic commemorative series.


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Price Guide

Last Updated: 7/2/2019

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Total Graded: 3569
Low Grade: VG
Average Grade: 64
High Grade: 68

The chart showing 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, 68 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 4/7/2020 1935 50C CONNECTICUT MS

NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1935 50C CONNECTICUT MS
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Grade: MS 68
Points: 4445
Owner: Gregg Bingham
Grade: MS 67
Points: 3520
Owner: *00001AAA Coins
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Related Articles

From the NGC Archives: 1935 Connecticut Tercentenary Half Dollar

8/16/2011 — The Connecticut Tercentenary Half Dollar has been widely praised for its balanced design and innovative style.
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From the NGC Archives: 1935 Connecticut Tercentenary Half Dollar

3/15/2011 — The Connecticut Tercentenary Half Dollar has been widely praised for its balanced design and innovative style.
View full article >

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