Coin Specifications

Category: Silver Commemoratives (1892-1954)
Mint: Philadelphia
Mintage: 18,000
Obverse Designer: William Marks Simpson
Reverse Designer: William Marks Simpson
Composition: Silver
Fineness: 0.9000
Weight: 12.5000g
ASW: 0.3617oz
Melt Value: $5.43 (6/16/2019)
Diameter: 30.6mm
Edge: Reeded
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1937 ANTIETAM 50C MS obverse 1937 ANTIETAM 50C MS reverse
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Description & Analysis

Unlike many of its contemporaries, the Antietam half dollar commemorates an event that was of truly national significance. The Battle of Antietam, which occurred on September 17th of 1862, is remembered as the single bloodiest day of the American Civil War. In total, nearly 5,000 were killed, and 20,000 were wounded.

The coinage of this commemorative was prompted by the Washington County Historical Society of Hagerstown, Maryland, which designated an Antietam Celebration Commission to co-ordinate events marking the battle’s 75th anniversary in 1937. A bill authorizing the coinage of no more than 50,000 Antietam half dollars was passed on June 24 of that year. Recognizing the abuses perpetrated by other coin programs, this legislation specifically required that the coins be struck with a single design and at a single mint.

Baltimore sculptor William Marks Simpson was selected to design and model the coin. Simpson was also the creator of commemorative halves for Roanoke and Norfolk. His models for the Antietam half dollar were reviewed favorably by the Commission of Fine Arts. The obverse depicts the generals of the two armies involved, George B. McClellan and Robert E. Lee on the obverse. The reverse features a view of a bridge over Antietam Creek which was the focus of the fighting in 1862.

The entire authorized mintage of 50,000 pieces was struck in August of 1937 at the Philadelphia Mint. The first struck was offered to President Franklin Roosevelt on August 12 of that year, and the remainder were offered by the Washington County Historical Society at $1.65 a piece. Despite the significant theme of the coin, they were poor sellers, and 32,000 were returned to the mint to be destroyed. This left a net mintage of merely 18,000 coins.


GRADE SUMMARY

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Price Guide

Last Updated: 6/7/2019

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1937 ANTIETAM 50C MS
  GVGFVFXF505355586061626364656667686970
Base $ - 300 325 345 475 510 520 525 550 585 600 663 676 682 775 805 1240 7500 28500 -
$ - - - - - - - - - 750 785 925 3000 14000

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Census

 
NGC GRADE SUMMARY

Total Graded: 2799
Low Grade: 55
Average Grade: 65
High Grade: 69

The chart showing 55 series, 58 series, 60 series, 61 series, 62 series, 63 series, 64 series, 65 series, 66 series, 67 series, 68 series, 69 series.
NGC CENSUS DETAIL Last Updated: 6/11/2019 1937 ANTIETAM 50C MS
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970Total
Base---------49-3291275851045797183143-2799
-----------------396--18
---------------24146---26
------------------2---2
Total---------49-3291275871049814200203-2845
 ---------0 %0 %-0 %1 %4 %21 %37 %29 %7 %1 %0 %- 

Auction Prices Realized

A random selection of coins is shown below.

Images
Date
Service
Grade
Auction House
Sale / Lot
Price
7/13/1998 PCGS MS 64   Teletrade Auction 1066, 1066/Lot# 1681 $436.00
5/29/2011 PCGS MS 64   Goldberg May 29 - June 1, 2011 The Pre-Long Beach Auction of US, World Coins and Currency, 63/Lot# 1110 $603.75
1/19/2012 PCGS MS 66   David Lawrence Rare Coins Thursday - Internet Auction # 655, 662/Lot# 7069 $851.00
2/28/2012 PCGS MS 65   Stack's Bowers The March 2012 Baltimore Auction, 135/Lot# 8684 $776.25
8/12/2012 NGC MS 63   GreatCollections GreatCollections Coin Auctions 08/12/2012, 35/Lot# 59703 $589.72
2/7/2013 PCGS MS 66   Heritage Auctions 2013 February 7 -8 & 10 US Coin Signature Auction - Long Beach Session(3), 1182/Lot# 4530 $763.75
7/6/2017 PCGS MS 67   Heritage Auctions 2017 July 6 - 9 Summer FUN US Coins Signature Auction - Orlando Summer FUN Session(3), 1257/Lot# 4371 $1,645.00
2/22/2018 NGC MS 66   Heritage Auctions 2018 February 22 - 26 LB Expo US Coins Signature Auction - Long Beach Session(7), 1272/Lot# 9313 $504.00
12/12/2018 NGC MS 64   Heritage Auctions Internet Coin Auction Session(2), 131851/Lot# 26169 $480.00


NGC Registry

NGC Registry Score 1937 50C MS ANTIETAM
 PrAgGVGFVF4045505355586061626364656667686970
Base597644692745900116611931206122612461284136313931416143314881707186923123817515813291
61366071079798911751197121312331259131013731401142214511561176120172814426478690
0000001197121312331259131013731401142214511561176120172814426400
0000001202121912391271133713831408142714701634181521643315471100
Registry Image Gallery
Grade: MS 69
Points: 5158
Owner: Gregg Bingham
 
Grade: MS 69
Points: 5158
Owner: J & L
 
View the Registry Image Gallery

Related Articles

From the NGC Archives: 1937 Battle of Antietam Half Dollar

11/16/2010 — The Battle of Antietam Creek, also known as the Battle of Sharpsburg, occurred on September 17, 1862.
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