We are pleased to offer for sale this 1966 SMS Kennedy Silver Half Dollar Gem BU. This Kennedy Half Dollar is in Brilliant Uncirculated (BU) condition. All of our BU Kennedy Half Dollars have nice eye appeal and no major marks or visible problems, representing a great value for the price. This 1966 SMS Kennedy Silver Half Dollar is of great worth to the collector or numismatist that needs to fill a hole in their BU Kennedy Half Dollar set. These Kennedy Half Dollars are taken from either original BU Rolls or Mint Sets.
The Kennedy Half Dollar was first struck in 1964 as a memorial to the recently assassinated American President, John F. Kennedy.The U.S. Mint and Congress moved very quickly to make the coin a reality, and the coin was authorized by Congress only a month after Kennedy's death.Initially, consideration was being given to depicting Kennedy on one of the larger silver coins, the silver dollar, half dollar, or quarter dollar.The president's widow Jaqueline Kennedy preferred that he be depicted on the half, as she did not want him to replace George Washington on the quarter.
The Kennedy Half Dollar was jointly designed by Gilroy Roberts, the Chief Engraver, and Frank Gasparro.Both men based their Kennedy Half Dollar designs on the John F. Kennedy Presidential Medal.This was necessitated by the time constraints involved.Roberts was responsible for the obverse of both the medal and the Kennedy Half Dollar, and made some minor changes to his previous design, including altering Kennedy's hair at the request of Jaqueline Kennedy, as well as the addition of the words LIBERTY and IN GOD WE TRUST.The reverse of the coin features the Presidential Seal, adapted by Gasparro from the seal on the Presidential Medal.
The metal composition of the Kennedy Half Dollar has changed several times since the coin was first minted in 1964.Initially, it featured a 90% silver composition, but only for coins bearing the date 1964.However, due to the incredible demand for the Kennedy Half Dollar, coins with the date 1964 were reauthorized two times and continued to bear the date 1964 until well into 1965, with almost 430 million 1964 Kennedy Half Dollars minted in all.Due in part to the large number of 1964 Kennedy Half Dollars, the mint had used up a large portion of its silver holdings, which combined with the rising value of silver, led the amount used in the coins to be reduced to 40% from 1965 until 1970.Kennedy Half Dollars produced from 1971 on contain no silver and are comprised of copper and nickel.
The 1966 SMS Kennedy Silver Half Dollar BU is comprised of an outer layer of .800 (80%) silver and .200 (20%) copper and an inner core of .209 (20.9%) silver and .791 (79.1%) copper. Overall composition is 40% silver with a diameter of 30.6mm and a mass of 11.5 grams.