2015 Kennedy Half Dollars Feature Original Portrait Design

Last year the United States Mint restored the original obverse portrait design of the Kennedy Half Dollar for use on the coins to be included within special 50th anniversary products. This year, the Mint will be using the original portrait design across all 2015-dated Kennedy Half Dollars.

This week, I received one of the 2015 Happy Birthday Sets offered by the Mint starting on January 13 and can confirm that the included 2015 Kennedy Half Dollar features the original portrait design. Along with the 2015 Birth Set, this represents the first release of the coin.

Happy Birthday Set

Shown below is close up scan of the 2015 Proof Kennedy Half Dollar included in my set. The US Mint has also posted coin images of the proof and uncirculated 2015-dated half dollars on their website showing the restoration of the original obverse design. Separately, Coin World has an article confirming that the restored design will be used across all products including the proof, silver proof, uncirculated, and circulating quality versions.


This is the third denomination which has seen the obverse reverted to the original design after years of small changes had compounded to transform the portraits.

Restored Lincoln Portrait

In 2010, Victor D. Brenner’s original obverse portrait for the Lincoln Cent was restored. This coincided with the adoption of the new reverse design featuring the Union Shield.

Restored Washington Portrait

Also in 2010, John Flanagan’s original obverse portrait for the Washington Quarter was restored. This coincided with the launch of the new America the Beautiful Quarters Program with a series of rotating reverse designs depicting national parks and sites.

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  1. VA Bob says

    The Mint does have affinity for making something special, less special by diluting the market with similar items. No surprises.

  2. VA Bob says

    I do have to add that the old designs are superior, and one wonders why they were altered in the first place.

  3. Dustyroads says

    Interesting, I wasn’t aware of the design changes to the cent and quarter, they do look much better.
    And while I wish the Mint would not be using the high relief design for the future releases, it should give sells a shot in the arm.

  4. says

    I am happy the mint’s chosen to go back to the older design. It looks much better. I regard this as good news (and of course, it will give me an excuse to buy more half dollars).

  5. jeff says

    Here’s really what the mint said. We have no imagination our production facilities are out dated and unable to be innovated in a coin design we will revert back to all previous designs this way it cost less whit the Kennedy half we won’t have to retool a thing we just keep pounding them out . The mint thanks all who keep buying are crap over and over and over same old dog just a different year. I’m watching picking my spots but as I see it won’t be many.

  6. Sith says

    I like the fact that they have gone back to the original designs. However I object to them marketing the 50th anniversary sets with something that is now pretty meaningless.

  7. Face 1004 says

    I think it was a good idea to bring the original obverse back. In fact, I think they should have done this design with the Presidential dollar of Kennedy.

  8. VA Bob says

    The JFK design should have been retired last year. It’s like the person you threw a party for won’t leave, long after they should have. I know Jeff is employing sarcasm, but there is a lot of truth in what he’s saying on the matter. And an RP set this year to boot? The Mint needs to stop testing how many varieties of the same coins it can make and ask if it should. If the Mint really wants to make money, the half is the perfect canvas for it (such as the ATB series), and more people that never think twice about collecting them would be buying. Quarters are going to be used in commerce regardless of what is on them.

  9. Hidalgo says

    In many, if not all, cases, the US Mint redesigned their coins to lower their relief. Lower relief coins allow the US Mint to produce more coins using the same die. The production of high relief coins wears out dies much faster than low relief coins.

  10. says

    Given that the last thread came to an unceremonious end, I just wanted to ask what the heck the Mint was thinking when they arbitrarily proposed the 2015 high relief gold coin. Was it because:
    1. The Mint felt that the coin community was clamoring for another HR gold coin.
    2. The Mint wanted to keep its employees HR coin making skills sharp in anticipation of the 2016 HR coins.
    3. The Mint wanted to give additional work to its coin design team, as to not keep them idle.
    4. All of the above.

  11. Dustyroads says

    Hidalgo~ That’s the way I understand the process as well. The greater the relief, the more pressure that is needed for a good strike. That’s the reason for the lack of detail in Liberty’s hair on the 1921 high relief dollar. It’s also the reason why full bell lines are so difficult to find on early 50’s Franklin halves minted in San Francisco. That’s when pressures were reduced to lengthen dye life.

  12. Hidalgo says

    @Dusty – you’re correct. Here is what Wikipedia says about high relief coins and die life:

    High Relief
    A coin with the raised design high above the field. Coins struck in high relief often have problems with details not coming up sharp enough and dies having a shorter than usual lifespan. If the design is higher than the rim, the coin may not be stackable, and the highest points of the design will wear away very quickly.


  13. Dustyroads says

    Hidalgo~ It’s too bad ANACS doesn’t have the same respect for grading as NGC and PCGS. It’s awesome to me there’s been a “missing edge lettering” coin found, and in SP69. In my head it’s worth 5 to 7 hundred. It would be interesting to see what the market will bare.

  14. gbotz says

    Are the Proof coins that are in the 2015 Happy Birthday Set considered Early Releases?
    If so, Does that mean when the 2015 Proof Set is released it is not eligible for Early Releases?

  15. CnoteS says

    This is the worst mistake the mint has ever made. They should of stopped the half dollars in 2015 or made a new design. This might turn me off to coin collecting for a very long time. Idiots are running the mint. Huge mistake. End of rant.

  16. GoldFishin says

    @cagcrisp says -“If they Choose 3 for Obverse and 10 for Reverse, All you Low Mintage guys will get another Low Mintage coin.”

    I think I’ve seen this movie before! 3:10 To Yuma….that didn’t turn out too well either in the end, did it? 😉 Real Low Final Pop


  17. Jerry Diekmann says

    GoldFishin – Great film – 3:10 to Yuma – this was a remake – check out the original, made 40 years earlier. Both great movies – imdb rated the 2007 film 7.8, and the 1957 film 7.6. Can’t get too much better than that.

  18. MarkInFlorida says

    I agree the Mint should retire the JFK half. Replace him with Reagan, especially f they won’t be doing a Reagan dollar.

  19. fmtransmitter says

    Jerry Diekmann says
    JANUARY 23, 2015 AT 8:47 PM

    Why is this “coin” $75.00 for a 1 ounce coin??? All 1 oz. gold coins have been set at a value of $100.00. since 1986. I hope to God the U.S. Mint isn’t starting to take ideas from the Canadian Mint, with its proliferation of values for coins, silver and gold. I stopped collecting Canadian coins about ten years ago nwhen they started going hyper-crazy on coins. Saved me a mint – pun intended.

    Get ready…inevitable. Business is business and when you crunch the sales numbers, the RCM and Perth are making and moving inventory, name of the game for any retail business… 🙁

  20. fmtransmitter says

    @VA Bob: Thanks, I actually didn’t know that an HR has a flat surface and the UHR “can” have a concave field..I knew about the raising…

  21. fmtransmitter says

    PLEASEEEEE retire the JFK half THIS YEAR! By all means, make a new half but retire the JFK…He has been so honored for his sacrifice and will always be but let’s see a “Tomb of the unknown Soldier” half now….Bet no one ever thought of that? Great idea and PC!!

  22. fmtransmitter says

    john says
    JANUARY 23, 2015 AT 9:08 PM

    well got a email from mint,no c and c set for me.sold out it said.

    What about fleabay? What are they going for now?

  23. fmtransmitter says

    gbotz says
    JANUARY 23, 2015 AT 5:41 PM

    Are the Proof coins that are in the 2015 Happy Birthday Set considered Early Releases?
    If so, Does that mean when the 2015 Proof Set is released it is not eligible for Early Releases?

    ER is thru NGC and they START the 30 day window the day they grade their first coin of whatever it is…Same with FR..PCGS is different

  24. GoldFishin says

    @Jerry D.- Thanks Jerry, I didn’t realize there was an original 3:10 to Yuma, I will have to check that one out! I hope things are well with you!

  25. says

    Poor Kennedy has long been abused. The hairstyle change in 1983, was a bad move. And poor Lincoln has become a small flat blob on the ultra thin layer of copper. Lincoln has been, over the decades, progressively distorted. A crime. Recall the farthing of Great Britain, it had a really beautiful and simple “wren”. One of the Canadian cents had a dove in flight, both would make really great obverses for our half dollar. Since it is not circulated, (what since 2001?), it is apparent that a department of the mint is becoming more and more a purely commercial business governed by the whims of fashion and fads. Variety does make for interesting collecting strategies for the coin collector, that is a small plus.
    Perhaps it is time to stop making all of the non-circulating numismatic and collector coins, and to get to work on making beautiful circulating coins. I also suspect that we can make 50% silver halves, why not? If the ugliness and disrespect continues, it would seem that a plot is unwinding in which we will not use coins but instead plastic or chips! A sad thought……..

  26. Dante says

    With regard to the Kennedy half, I agree with several folks here who say that the Mint should stop making them .

    As a replacement I propose the Benjamin Franklin half, in clad, using the exact same design as in 1963. It will only be produced for 9 years (or is it 8?) so the coin can achieve a total of 25 years as was originally mandated.

    During that time we could discuss a suitable new half dollar design. It seems to take 6 years to get anything done these days, so we have enough time to do it right.

    It’s a thought.

  27. Hidalgo says

    The U.S. Mint currently produces Kennedy half dollars, Presidential dollars, Native American dollars, and commemoratives (among some of its offerings) primarily for coin collectors, dealers, etc. These coins are not intended for general circulation and future issues probably never will be.

    With that being said, I applaud the U.S. Mint for giving collectors an opportunity to purchase the coins mentioned above. I have complete sets of Presidential dollars and Sacagawea/Native American dollars. I am starting now to assemble a set of Kennedy half dollars.

    Admittedly, I would not mind if the US Mint changed the reverse side of the Kennedy half dollar each year, much like it is doing with the Sacagawea/Native American dollars. That would add variety to this much loved coin.

    And it would be awesome if the US Mint changed the reverse side of the Roosevelt dime — it has done so with the Lincoln cent, Jefferson nickel, Washington quarter, and Sacagawea/Native American dollar. Seeing a Roosevelt dime with highlights from World War II each year for say,,5 years, would create a fantastic subset and lead to increased revenues for the US Mint…..

  28. cagcrisp says

    If Republicans ever control Congress and the White House, you will see a Reagan half dollar…

  29. R says

    Just a heads up for anyone looking to buy silver.
    MCM on ebay is selling rolls of 2015 ASE for $399.95 including shipping.


  30. Boz says

    Have not seen a half dollar circulating in years. Like 2 dollar bills most bank tellers today don’t know what you are talking about if you make a point of asking for some.

  31. Ralph says

    Just a heads up for anyone looking to buy silver.
    MCM on ebay is selling rolls of 2015 ASE for $399.95 including shipping.


    (sorry, sent last post under wrong name)

  32. jeff says

    Hidalgo spot on sir, that’s called innovation that would keep the hobby interesting to say the least, however I think I will be a long time before we see any of that thinking outside the box. Even silver certificates would be cool.

  33. Larry says

    Per Coin World, here are the two obverse designs chosen for the high relief coin. Also, the mint has officially said it is high relief, NOT ultra high relief, so that debate can be put to rest. I think I will wait and see what the coins look like before I decide, hard to know what the real coin will look like from drawings.
    The 2 reverses chosen are not in this article, but are in the latest Coinworld. They are numbers 01 and 10, if you go back to the previous MNB story you can see them. I think they are good choices.
    At least the 2009 UHR will remain the only one mere mortals can buy.

  34. Hidalgo says

    @Larry – I am not especially impressed with any of the obverse $75 gold high relief designs. And I am even less impressed with the CFA’s two recommendations. If the US Mint decides to go along with one of the CFA’s obverse recommendations, I will likely pass on buying this politically correct coin. (At current gold prices, I presume it will cost about $1600 + per coin).

  35. Larry says

    @ Hidalgo – like I said, I will wait until I can see the actual coin. I remember I was on the side with the RP Buff, but when I saw the coin, I had to have one. This will be a hard choice. One thing to remember, high relief coins don’t come around often. This may be the only one we ever see.

  36. john says

    order the American c and c on 1-5-2015.card was hit but money was return.On ebay c and c set around 40.00 to 50.00

  37. VA Bob says

    john – you might find this excerpt from live chat from Dec 22, 2014, on the American CC set interesting:

    11:07:26 [Visitor] Why are some people that ordered the American Coins and Chronicles sets on the 10th of Dec. getting their sets before previous orders?

    11:13:54 [Rachel] The distribution center did experience an issue which caused a small portion of total orders for the Coin and Currency set to ship prior to other orders which were placed on past days.

    11:14:17 [Rachel] All orders which were placed prior to this issue will still be allocated inventory and shipped when available.

  38. Keep Calm & Stack On says

    A&L – The one I thought up until I just saw that a HH limit to be imposed would be a SO w/i a week, now not so much; though we don’t really know how much the BoD has marketed the series to outside agencies. I do know this, after receiving the mint’s USM Comm brochure in the mail which I’ve picked a half-dozen times now, I keep finding new aspects on those designs I like and they’re just plain neat. That $1 PRF will be a big hit with people of all ages outside of this hobby (when they see them) and why I’ll be getting more than one for gifts.

    Keithster – TA9 order Placed: 12/10/14; Order Status still: BACKORDER

  39. Jerry Diekmann says

    frmtransmitter – I won’t buy any coin just because it came from the Mint, and especially gold coins, if the designs are ugly, mediocre, or PC,, and the obverses of this new $75 !?!?!?! coin seem to meet all those “attributes”. I’m afraid you may be right, and the US Mint may be joining the ranks of the RCM and Perth in issuing coins of doubtful merit and weird assigned values. Count me out of this party. Why would someone lay out that kind of money for such a contrived reason? And Liberty with wings? How did she manage to get herself “dressed” – I know I am taking liberties there and the punm is intended. I’ll wait for 2016 – 2015 looks like it’s going to be a very bad year for coins.

  40. Small time collector says

    As a small time collector I have not stayed abreast of the little changes and cannot fathom a guess why they change designs periodically.
    I do wish they would stay with more classic design and more importantly stay away from pc designs that are making me purchase less.
    i.e. the pending marshall coin. I would have bought based on the historical aspect alone and will not because of a forced element that detracts my interest..
    Rather than creating interest with interesting offerings, those in charge have been making me less interested.
    I also feel they should solicit designs periodically and regularly from the public at large.
    I do not feel I’m alone.

  41. cagcrisp says

    HH limits on SR7. The longer the Mint goes before announcing HH limits, the Lower the limit

  42. Tinto says


    ” ..Seeing a Roosevelt dime with highlights from World War II each year for say,,5 years, would create a fantastic subset and lead to increased revenues for the US Mint…..”

    Maybe they should also mint proof Nickels in silver too like they did from 42 – 45 …. using the design of that time …

  43. KEITHSTER says

    KCSOs Yes Moms order for 5 sets TA9 from the 10th still show backorder. hope she gets them maybe John’s order got bump to the end of the line ouch? Hey if the make the rest that they have orders for and forget the to put the year and stuff on them no harm done and still legal right and would sure put a smile on those left waiting? Seems the 99 peek at whats left is out to lunch for now you have to order one at a time and keep stacking to get the #’s you want but hey better than nothing? Oh if anyone’s been wanting the 250 box of FDR’s better go now only 2 left? Good Luck Allways:>:>:>:>:>:>:>:>:>

  44. The Real "Cool" Dave says

    @KEITHSTER says, January 24, 2015 at 3:33 pm

    What I am getting from the Mint is if we don’t have them by now, we are SOL.

    Pisses me off!

  45. I startee collectin yesterday says

    The politically correct version of lady liberty is the traditional white woman. That is the correct version and the version most desired by politicians. So, when I read people commenting on the minority version of lady liberty and they call it politically correct, I can only assume that these types don’t know what the phrase “politically correct” means. The correct representation has always been a white woman. The political representation is also a white lady liberty. This has been the tradition in America. The proposed images break from tradition, which I think makes for great art. Anyway, I like the choices and will buy both versions.

  46. I startee collectin yesterday says

    Regarding the restored portrait of President Kennedy…. I’m very excited about this and will most likely increase my collecting of Kennedy’s this year. I’m most interested in seeing the circulating quality coins. I think the restored Washington by Flanagan looks great.

  47. thePhelps says

    @startee – the historically correct version of liberty is a white woman. The politically correct version is now an “inclusive” version with a minority shown on the coin.

    You apparently have no idea what it means to be politically correct.

    While you might enjoy the artistic renditions of these coins – there are many that believe they don’t plan on selling them to a lot of collectors. These are statement coins at best – much like the CRA coin was a protest coin and it didn’t find many collectors. You want to energize people – energize a majority – you want to ignore them – you’ll find they are more than willing to ignore you as well.

  48. says

    @the Phelps, That sounds really smart. With your same analysis please explain why last year I could buy a 2005 PF 70 Marines dollar for $45.00, but, I can’t touch a 2001 Indian head/buffalo dollar PF 70 for under $450.00? Patriotism vs the Indians?

  49. GoldFishin says

    Personally, I couldn’t care less if lady liberty was a martian. However, the proposed obverse design O-3 is a terrible design. The subject is off center….the right eye looks like either her eyelashes are glued shut or there is some kind of beetle digging into her eye. She also has bags under her eye that makes it look like she just woke up. If you look at the details of the design, of which there is only one, how in the world does it communicate a message of liberty? My first impression of the design was that she was representing the Olympic games because of the foliage headdress. The design obviously was picked for some other reason than because it was good design. I guess one can delude oneself and say it was because it is quality art or a quality design.

    By comparison read about the detail and thought that was put into the Morgan dollar design(or any other classic liberty design) and ask yourself if the O-3 design is even in the same universe?


  50. I started collecting yesterday says

    I think a good example of political correctness in our coinage is the ongoing law that demands “in god we trust” be stamped on our coins. Even though the constitutions forbids this practice and many citizens don’t believe in god, we still have to fall in line because to otherwise question this practice is considered un-American. Political correctness is being forced by the politics of the day to do what big government thinks is the correct thing. Since the Citizens Commission has submitted the proposal for a one-time design, I doubt their actions rise to the level of political correctness.

  51. says

    @Hawkster, Yeah I guess so. It just seems strange to me…? The depiction on the obverse of the Marines dollar is classic too, IMHO.

  52. VA Bob says

    2 Cents I’d say this had a little to do with after market prices of these two commems:

    The maximum production for across all products was 500,000.

    “The 2001 Buffalo Silver Dollar went on sale June 7, 2001 and sold out on June 21, 2001 making it one of the most popular modern commemorative coins. Prices for all versions remain high due to the continued collector demand for the issue.

    A surcharge of $10 was added to the price of each coin to fund the opening of the NMAI and supplement the educational and outreach efforts of the museum. After the quick sell out, the NMAI sought the production of an additional 250,000 or 500,000 coins, but the Treasury Secretary denied the request.

    Marine Corps Silver Dollars were minted in proof and uncirculated versions at the Philadelphia Mint. The commemorative coin program was originally authorized with a maximum mintage of 500,000 coins, but this was increased to 600,000 by authority of the Treasury Secretary.”

    No doubt if more of the 2001 Buffalo were available, they would have sold, but at a detriment to their current value. We have the 2011 ASE set and the 2013 ASE set, granted a bit more than 100K difference, to see what that number does to aftermarket prices.

  53. thePhelps says

    @started… the separation of church and state has nothing to do with the words “In God We Trust” on American coinage. There is no one telling you to follow that guiding principle in life. If you read any history books that describe the church involvement with the King of England – you would know why that separation exists.

    Here is a modern day example of it for you.

    In France a newspaper published questionably humorous articles that use the image of Mohammed and poke fun at the followers of Islam. This offends some radical Islamic Extremists and they storm the newspaper and kill a number of people to show their anger with the publishers. These extremists are then hunted down and killed by the government.

    In Saudi Arabia a man publishes some questionable articles about Mohammed to the internet and the government of Saudi Arabia has taken the man into custody and will give him 1,000 lashes with a whip (read kill him), because his articles angered them and offended their God.

    Do you even understand the difference in those 2 scenarios? The separation has nothing to do with words on a coin, or your personal beliefs. What it does is not allow the government to use it’s religious beliefs to enact laws that deny you your rights to believe how you want. Unlike Saudi Arabian law which utilizes the agencies of the government to force you to follow their single belief or die.

  54. stephen m says

    Politically correct and or bending over backwards to please some minority groups has been going on since the 1970’s as far back as I remember. In 1975 as a young 25 year old white male I was looked over for many job positions after finishing a secondary education. I had to be of color or old to be at the front of the line. There were too many quotas to be filled where I didn’t fit. I just had to try harder. I will not purchase a politically correct coin of any kind.

  55. Keep Calm & Stack On says

    2 cents – I’m going to throw out my 2-cents on your inquiry regarding the ’01 Buff vs ’05 USMC (though in reality a similar comparison could be made across any number of combinations) as I’ve been put some thought into this exact topic as of late to better understand Secondary market performance for these modern coins and make smarter purchase decisions going forward.

    This is preliminary and not likely to gain much traction out here on MNB as it requires you to be open minded and think differently about these coins, though the savvy collector may see some value in it. But your answer may lie in Mintage thinking vs. Present/Future Core Collector Base thinking.

    All too often we think purely in terms of mintage for these modern coins/Comms without truly understanding/assessing what the Core Collector Base is Today & in the Future. Core collector base is as I see it are those that are likely to buy a series or mint offering year over year, or the loyalists. For example, the core collector base for the gold JFK is more like of a fraction of those sold, as you have many of us that bought multiple examples and then there are those that bought the coin that rarely by mint coins. This is important as it discounts the argument of “mintage & future value” when you have multiple coins of an offering being sat on by a collector with the intent to liquidate some day. These ‘extra coins” on the side lines begin to exponentially skew what we perceive as the true market demand, and could ultimately saturate the future market as we’ve seen all to often with these Comms, with one exception, which bring us back to Base.

    In my opinion, the collector base for Moderns goes something like this (and you could fall into one or multiple groups) which is Centered around Designs –

    a. Modern Classic/Iconic – think ’09 UHR, ’01 Buff, ’16 Standing Liberty, etc

    b. Modern Circulating/Bullion Designs – AGE/ASEs, AtBs, JFK series, the RP PRF in the MoD set we may get, & so on

    c. Modern Themed – these are your themed Commemoratives with various levels of interest in either the theme or DESIGN such as BHoF or CRA. Want to think – future value??? – don’t think mintage here like we’ve seen lately, think Future collector base/Interest level here.

    d. Modern One-Offs – I would consider this year’s HR a one-off modern, I personally feel that the First Spouse series is a modern one-off.

    Ok, getting a little long winded here but I think the argument could be made that 1) these Modern coin’s collectibility/future demand have more to do with Design Associated with a a present/future collector base than mintage or how snazzy a coin may look, & 2) the collector present/future collector base is FAR GREATER with a) Classic/Icon and decreases down the tiers where by a) or b) are considerably higher than for c) & d) designs.

    I could go on put you see my point, with the ’01 Buff vs. ’05 Corps.., it’s more that Modern Classic/Iconic has a far greater collector base/future base than Modern Comm (and I think we’re also see that play out with the BHoFs roller coaster currently, in all fairness).

    This is my 2 cents, & why I’m very much on the side lines with the ’15 HR currently – the resulting design will be finalized as either Modern Classic/Iconic (not very likely now) – or – Modern One-Off (AND will be the ultimate factor as to whether I choose to sink $1650 – $1850 into a two-coin set).

    Hope this helps, I’m not an expert, just providing a different spin on an old topic that so much of you all have taught me about. 🙂

  56. Samuel says

    you google “sharpton hollywood”. i think that’s one reason for the design issue discussed here.

  57. thePhelps says

    stephen – what happened to you also happened to me in the 70’s but it was affirmative action at work. I remember the day I interviewed for a position and was told I was the most qualified applicant they had – but because they were directed to hire a minority – they had to hire a Latino or a woman or an African American. It happened – I wasn’t thrilled with it – but I also moved on.

    Political Correctness in those days was directed more towards what language you could use. Which actually wasn’t all bad (IMO). PC today has morphed into what you can say or think and if you don’t think or say what they think you are ostracized.

    Ok…I am off my political soapbox and back to coins and collecting gold and silver US Mint products…

  58. jeff says

    In regards to the Clad K14 High Relief Kennedy Set what’s to stop someone from removing the P & D High Relief coins and replacing them with good quality circulated half’s from a roll? I can see this happening just curious if there a big difference.

  59. VA Bob says

    jeff – as far as I know, the 2014 rolls used the low relief and “spaghetti” hair version. I’m sure there will be some people duped by the unscrupulous that exist.

  60. VA Bob says

    Also you can check them against a regular circulating late 80’s thru 2014 clad half as a safeguard. Most people have at least one of those around the house somewhere.

  61. GoldFishin says

    @KCSO- Funny football video..I laughed myself silly…can’t wait for the Belichek & Brady sequel to come out.
    I think your analysis is very well thought out, informative, and accurate. You may be getting too smart for many us of here. I would like to add the reason that Iconic/classic previously circulated designs do well. Almost anyone that collects coins or even those that don’t has a buffalo nickel story if they are old enough to have grown up when you could still find one occasionally. They were long gone from circulation when I was a child, but I remember my mom finding one every now and then at the bank she worked at. It was thrilling to see one and remember the first time she brought one home. It was so cool, the Buffalo is an amazing animal in its own right, impressive in stature, with a bit of historic mystery also. I was taught in school again and again how it was almost hunted to extinction by uncaring greedy people only interested in the skins of the animal. So when you found a Buffalo nickel, it was like finding something that was very rare and endangered.
    To make a lengthening story short, with any iconic/classic design, the real collector base and also those that are not collectors have a story/memory connected to the design. For those that don’t because they are too young may wish to somehow relive or experience the same historic mystery during the time period when the Iconic coin was in circulation. I never even saw a walking liberty half in person until I started collecting coins. It is one of my favorites now. I will buy a nicely done ’16 commemorative regardless of mintage, price, or precious metal used. It is my chance to relive a bit of history and participate in the hobby with all those that have come before us, some of whom may have spent a silver walking liberty to buy a lunch or several gallons of gas and receive a few mercury dimes, buffalo nickels, or wheat pennies back in change.
    In my opinion, this is why commemorative issues like the ’01 Buffalo or the ’09 UHR continue to do well in the aftermarket regardless of price or mintage. Personally I love the ’05 USMC designs, but not everyone was in the Marines and the USMC is an exclusive and elite group of men and women by design. Most people will never be able to relate to their sacrifice or service and therefore don’t go running out to buy a commemorative honoring that service. Have a Nice Day All!!

  62. Hidalgo says

    @Jeff – if you place a 2014 “high relief” Kennedy half next to a circulation-quality 2014 “low relief” Kennedy, you’ll see distinct differences between the two coins. The “low relief” coin has considerably more hair strands visible on Kennedy’s head.

    Take a look at the photos on the link below which compares a 1964 “high relief” Kennedy coin with a 2014 “low relief” coin.


  63. john says

    I think that guy at hsn got mine,he had 2000 set the other on his show,I will call mint on Monday to see what happen to my c and c set.I should of got my 5 sets.They chaged my card and in the past I got my order.But they did put the money back on the card.

  64. gary says

    If we should always adhere to the “historically correct” of something that would mean that the earth is flat.

  65. dan says

    Why do we need a modern Liberty??? Something this iconic which has become a symbol recognized by so many around the world as America should be left alone… Why not change the flag while we are at it. Certain traditions are best when left alone! If you want to update her, change things in the background or foreground fine, but leave her alone!!!

  66. Sith says

    @gary – The ancient Greeks knew the world was round, and had calculated its circumference based on trigonometry, and the Sumner Solstice.

  67. says

    Is anyone else wondering why we are not hearing about the 30th ann ASE coming out this year? Was 1995 for the 10th the ONLY one that will be right?

  68. thePhelps says

    2cents… I think the mint has used up the ASE quota. I thought there was an article last year indicating they were going to give the series a rest for a while. I don’t recall if it was here or maybe another site…

  69. says

    @thePhelps, Thanks. I had not read that myself. I always thought on anniversaries like this starting at 10 years it continues for every 5 years. Maybe they’ll catch up in the year 2025, “If man is still alive”…

  70. says

    It’s pretty amazing how Miss Liberty has morphed into a beautiful, young nubile maiden, as depicted in the artists’ proposed designs for the ’15 HR gold. Liberty has certainly evolved over the long span of years in which she has appeared on various U.S. coin denominations.
    Does anyone remember how the MintNewsBlog lit up with mostly negative comments back in 1878 when the Morgan Dollar, and it’s depiction of Ms. Liberty, was released to the public? It went from a disliked coin to, arguably, the most popular U.S. coin ever.
    O.K., I’m still searching for an answer as to why the Mint is coming out with this odd, one of a kind offering of this contemporary HR gold coin. Does the Mint believe that its customers can’t wait until the ’16 classics come out? Or, do they believe that sex sells?

  71. fmtransmitter says

    Jumped into the First Spouse Bronze coin set again and NOW it says “Out of stock”, then Learn More…Click on Learn more and it says this product is out of stock, it may or may not be available for sale again. WOW!! This is crazy this new company. I mean, what the heck is going on at the Mint. It is like they are all scratching their heads over there. Maybe we should have the US Mint and the US Collector Mint, two separate entities so the one that makes the circulating coinage can do their jobs and whatever else and then the one that is made to make money and provide the Numismatists their collectibles…

  72. Tinto says


    For me the Mint dropped any pretense of catering to collectors when they did not mint the 2009 proof ASE because they were so busy making the bullion version for the big Authorized Buyers (bringing in big bucks) …. thank goodness I do not collect them regularly (only the RP, EU ) or I would be staring at that hole in my collection forever …

    I’d guess even their minting of collector coins is for the benefit of the big boys .who can throw the biggest amount of bucks … IMO

  73. fmtransmitter says

    What’s up with the tv guy getting 2,000 EU C & C’s while folks sit around with confirmed orders and credit card charges?

  74. fmtransmitter says

    It really is funny/sad to watch the tv shows pushing LABELS, it is like getting so bad when they talk about how the mint sold a record number of SE’s last year so you should buy this one because it has this special label; that is exclusive to us. ANY coin with a mintage of 40 million, or ANY collectible for that matter, doesn’t have a chance in heck to reach a higher value with mintage’s like that…If anyone can mention something that has been made 40 million times, anything, that went up in value, please chime in…And I am sure there is SOMETHING out there, just having a major brain fart about what it could be…

  75. VA Bob says

    2cents – I’m curious if they are going to do anything for the 10 year anniversary of the Buffalo. Perhaps they should have held the RP for this year. Of course doing that now would be underwhelming. An origins set would be nice containing 2015 dated buffalo nickel, silver dollar, and the gold proof. That pipe dream.

  76. Tinto says


    “What’s up with the tv guy getting 2,000 EU C & C’s while folks sit around with confirmed orders and credit card charges?”

    The US Mint …. catering to collectors (puke) … amazing (to me)that they had no HH order limit (The Mint should say simply Order Limit as that seems more appropriate since the word “household” somehow brings to mind an individual person or maybe a family placing an order whereas any entity (like dealers, bid business, etc) can place an order so hey US Mint call a spade a spade and stop hiding behind cute little marketing words) on a 50k low priced item. It almost seems like they wanted to get this out of their hair ASAP….

    Quite glad I decided to throttle back buying products from the Mint ….

  77. says

    @VA Bob, That would be nice. Your idea of the multiples set would be awesome! And maybe bring back the fractional coins too.

  78. Keep Calm & Stack On says

    GF – thanks for sharing, always enjoy insightful perspectives. And I could only hope to be as wise and savvy as some of you all out here.., but I’m trying, hope to catch up soon!
    I realize I may go into overkill mode with some of thoughts, though my real problem is that too much of this stuff strikes my fancy, so I’m finding that I have find a means to separate the wheat from the chaff as this hobby gets ever more expensive! Though thanks again

  79. CasualCollector says

    Regarding the HSN Guy — he says he had to buy the Sac EU C&C on the secondary market at premiums over issue price. So in his case I don’t think he bought thousands from the Mint directly. But maybe the other TV Guys were somehow able to buy them directly from the Mint (even after they imposed the 5 per household limit). Sounds like shenanigans to me.

    I’m still waiting to see the following pop up on eBay
    1) the NGC SP70 Kennedy Clad(s)
    2) the ANACS Sac C&C missing the edge lettering

  80. Ends in Error says

    Is it possible the new Mint shippers are demanding a constant new flow of product and services to keep their people employed? Sure seems that way. How long before they start selling Redbooks, Coin Albums ( oops they already are ) and ATB Quarters Coin Spoons?

    Hey maybe hook up with Princess Cruise Lines and do numisthemed ” Coin Cruises” ?

    And get up with Ford Motor Company and do a limited VDB Edition Lincoln ?

  81. cagcrisp says

    @GoldFishin, Bought USO pre-market Today. I’m not as bullish on oil as I am ISIS doing something in Saudi Arabia. If I was ISIS, with what has happened in Yemen, I would test the new ruler of Saudi Arabia. More of a play on ISIS than oil.

    IF you are interested, I would NOT buy USO in a taxable account. Only a Roth or traditional IRA.

    How does this have anything to do with MNB? The only way I have Any money for Gold and Silver purchases is buy trading stocks/gambling…

  82. Brad says


    Yeah, now it seems pretty much like the Mint only calls items “sold out” that are pulled from sale at a specific time, like the “last chance” items. However, I honestly don’t believe that ANY of the items currently marked “out of stock” will ever be offered for sale again. They are in fact sold out, but the Mint just won’t say so. I liked the old way much better. Who knows how many months the Mint will leave those items on the website, giving false hope to anyone who might be interested?

  83. Brad says

    I don’t know if anyone mentioned it or not, but it seems the Mint has taken away the ability to get a remaining count on items in stock from the main item pages. It will only add “1” of any item to your “bag” on the product page now, regardless of the number you actually type in the box. You then have to view your bag and change the quantity to 99 from that page. However, if you exceed the number available it doesn’t tell you how many of the product remains. You have to keep guessing until you hit a number that it will accept.

  84. says

    Gary not Dave,

    That’s easy enough, I wasn’t really following the comments on the blog at the time (holiday stuff was distracting me) and didn’t discover it was anything special in the “first wave.” When the mint put the second batch up for sale, though, I dove right in and scooped one up. 🙂

  85. Ralph says

    MikeinPA: Crazy up here in NH also. Went shopping yesterday and OMG it was a mad house! Bet my shipment from MCM gets a little delayed.

    Brad: I noticed that yesterday. They’re on to us!!

  86. Ends in Error says

    Only 37 – 2013 Edith Roosevelt Proof First Spouse Gold coins are left on the US Mint website for ordering. Get one soon , if you want one, before they are gone .

  87. Bernie in FL says

    Yesterday I bought my LAST First Spouse PCGS PR70 (Margaret Taylor) from Great Collection’s to finish my PCGS PR70 Collection of them ALL up till 2014!!!! Yaaaaaaaaaa………

    Now to figure how in the Hell I am going to Pay for this one 🙂

    7 years of Collecting this “Love-Hate Set” and Only a few to go. Then I have No Idea what the Heck I will do with the Set. Any Ideas? 🙂

    Go ahead blast me with ideas. I’m a Big Boy 🙂

  88. Bernie in FL says

    @ Douggie

    Yes. It was a First Strike PCGS PR70 First Spouse. All my First Spouse’s are PR70 First Strikes. In 7 years the only First Spouse (Margaret Taylor) was graded as a PR69. So I had to go look and find it in First Strike PCGS PR70. 3 years of searching and finally found it. Cost an Arm and a Leg, literally!!!!!!

    OK, to all you label Haters. Go ahead and Blast me too! 🙂

  89. VaBeachEd says

    VA Bob says
    JANUARY 25, 2015 AT 6:15 PM

    “2cents – I’m curious if they are going to do anything for the 10 year anniversary of the Buffalo. Perhaps they should have held the RP for this year. Of course doing that now would be underwhelming. An origins set would be nice containing 2015 dated buffalo nickel, silver dollar, and the gold proof. That pipe dream.”

    I would like to see a 4 coin Buffalo gold set like in 2008, but I think they will wait untill next year to do (if they do) a 10 year anniversary set like the 25th Anniversary ASE Set in 2011, not 2010.

  90. VaBeachEd says

    Gary not Dave says
    JANUARY 26, 2015 AT 7:51 AM

    How did anyone on this blog not get in on the CC Set early?

    I was at my farm and when I got back home and read the blog, I was only able to order 5 from the mint, but I also bought a mint sealed box of 10 on ebay for $270.00 ($27.00 each). They are going close to $50 each now. If I had not been at the farm and read the blog, I would have ordered 100 from the mint and now wished it was 1,000. That close to the end of the year, I would not have worried about them, in another produce, that could have included them.

  91. CB says

    “Only 37 – 2013 Edith Roosevelt Proof First Spouse Gold coins are left on the US Mint website for ordering. Get one soon , if you want one, before they are gone.”

    Is there a link that shows how many of each item are left for ordering?

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