1919-D 50C MS (PCGS# 6578)
The January 2012 Americana Sale
Lot Number: 9151
View the Original Auction
1919-D Walking Liberty Half Dollar. MS-64+ (PCGS). Amazing quality for the specialist as this date is virtually impossible to find in Gem grades as a mere 11 have been graded at that level or finer by PCGS. This is the sole example reported as MS-64+ of this key date condition rarity in the Walking Liberty half dollar series. The strike is typical with minor softness on the central devices, a common feature to these early branch mint Walkers. Liberty's thumb is just visible in an outline. Essentially bright silver with a glaze of pale rose-gold, with fresh and inviting surfaces that reveal few signs of handling when studied.<br />
Now that the data from coin certification has accumulated for 25 years, it has at last become apparent which dates are indeed the rarest, and the true key issues are known in black and white. For the Walking Liberty half dollar series, several dates have long been regarded as key issues, but lo and behold the 1919-D has earned its way to the top in terms of rarity in Gem condition. Only the 1921-S from this series comes close with 17 examples reported at above the MS-65 grade level. Therefore, this ever so close MS-64+ should be of keen interest to the advanced collector.<br />
<strong>Numismatic Reflections by Q. David Bowers</strong><br />
An interesting footnote, so to speak: The 1916 <em>Mint Report</em> describes Miss Liberty as being "striding." However, the term Liberty Walking has been popular for many years, now standardized as Walking Liberty, as here, the style used by the <em>Guide Book of United States Coins</em>.