If Kennedy was not assasinated, would we still have the Franklin half?

Discussion in 'US Coins Forum' started by TylerH, Jan 9, 2019.

  1. TylerH

    TylerH Well-Known Member

    just a random thought I had. The Franklin half is a charming coin - and Franklin himself an interesting character. I feel like part of the reason they still mint halves though is to honor our fallen President - so that said, if Kennedy lived, would we still get Franklins as proof halves, or would the half have disappeared much like the large dollar coin?
     
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  3. LakeEffect

    LakeEffect Average Circulated

    Interesting question. Due to the silver lobby at the time, we probably still would have had the 40% silver issues thru 1970, so those would have been hoarded. But after they went clad, would they have circulated like any other clad coin? Maybe, maybe not, who knows?.

    If I had to guess, I would guess no, but I could be wrong. Eisenhower's never caught on, but that may have been because they were perceived as "special". Franklins were not "special", perceived or otherwise, so who knows?
     
  4. SorenCoins

    SorenCoins Well-Known Member

    I would like to see the mint make a commemorative franklin half, the same design, in high relief clad.

    I think it'd be awesome.
     
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  5. TylerH

    TylerH Well-Known Member

    I also mean would the “large” half be gone as well as a coin - much like the large dollar coin became a small dollar coin, would the half have changed size maybe? Or just disappeared totally?
     
  6. TylerH

    TylerH Well-Known Member

    I agree. Would love to see the mint make a new Franklin half as a commemorative
     
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  7. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    It is an interesting question. I bet Franklin's would have made the transition to clad then died a slow death in the late 1990's. I doubt that they would have rehashed a Franklin half in every manner of mint offerings like Kennedy has been.
     
  8. -jeffB

    -jeffB Greshams LEO Supporter

    The things I've read most recently give me the impression that halves went out of circulation due to a one-two punch -- the 1964 Kennedys were hoarded out of sentiment, and all the others (pre-1964) were hoarded because of Gresham's law, er, silver content. By the time clad halves appeared, people had gotten out of the habit of spending them.

    I don't remember 40% halves being hoarded due to silver, but I was really young at the time. Certainly their silver content was worth less than their face value, but it was also pretty unusual by then to see half dollars at all. There were still slots for them in cash registers, but those slots were most often empty.

    If Kennedy had not been assassinated -- too much different, I have no idea how coinage would have evolved. I still feel like we beat incredible odds to make it through the Cold War era without a cataclysm, and changing anything might have pushed us over the edge.

    But if I had to guess, I think Franklin halves would have resumed circulation along with the rest of small change. After all, they're exactly the same weight and volume as two quarters or five dimes, so "too big and heavy" arguments don't hold much water, IMHO.
     
  9. CoinBlazer

    CoinBlazer Professional Teenager

    No! Make it silver!
     
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  10. messydesk

    messydesk Well-Known Member

    Perhaps the Franklin half would have been replaced with an Ike half in 1970-1 and we'd never have the Ike dollars.
     
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  11. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    Well darn...... Now you have me wondering what a Franklin Bicentennial half would have looked like!
     
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  12. -jeffB

    -jeffB Greshams LEO Supporter

    Perhaps. And we might instead have had clad and 40% Peace dollars.
     
  13. LakeEffect

    LakeEffect Average Circulated

    Sounds like a Moonlight Mint project...:eek:
     
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  14. baseball21

    baseball21 Well-Known Member

    Franklin maybe maybe not, but more likely yes. Would we have the Kennedy no we would not for sure
     
  15. Collecting Nut

    Collecting Nut Borderline Hoarder

    I think Franklin Halves would have ended in 1970 then replaced by another deceased president. We do have a lot of choices. Which one? Who knows but I wish the Mint would get off the president kick and move back to more patriotic coins.
     
  16. COCollector

    COCollector Well-Known Member

    Yes, we'd still have a Franklin half.

    Just like we still have a Lincoln cent, Jefferson nickel, Roosevelt dime, and Washington quarter.

    Edit: But a 2018 Franklin half wouldn't be circulated any more than a 2018 Kennedy half is today.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2019
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  17. Lon Chaney

    Lon Chaney Well-Known Member

    Needed large dollars for slot machines, they'd still have been minted with someone on them.

    Same as how halves were minted for circulation up until enough casinos switched to paper slips.
     
  18. COCollector

    COCollector Well-Known Member

    Agreed. But I'd prefer 90% silver, same as the original.

    We'll probably have to wait for the 100th anniversary in 2048. And it'll probably be a gold commemorative. (Hopefully I'll still be around at age 96.)
     
  19. TylerH

    TylerH Well-Known Member

    Ya we missed his 300th birthday (2006) and unless we all age REALLY well, we will miss the 300th anniversary of his death in 2090
     
  20. -jeffB

    -jeffB Greshams LEO Supporter

    See above. It's hard to say what would have happened without that one-two punch of Kennedy hoarding and silver being pulled from circulation.
     
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  21. TylerH

    TylerH Well-Known Member

    And the fact that the half is still made as a memorial to him - No assassination, no memorial needed, and maybe no "need" for this size / denomination of coin.
     
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