Walk This Way- Early Set (1916-1933)
1921-D

Obverse:

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Reverse:

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Coin Details

Origin/Country: UNITED STATES
Design Description: HALF DOLLARS - WALKING LIBERTY
Item Description: 50C 1921 D
Full Grade: NGC MS 64
Owner: Walkerfan

Set Details

Custom Sets: This coin is not in any custom sets.
Competitive Sets: Walk This Way- Early Set (1916-1933)   Score: 6547
Walk This Way--One Per Date Set   Score: 6547
Walk This Way--Full Set (1916-1947)   Score: 6547
Research: NGC Coin Explorer NGC Coin Price Guide

Owner Comments:

Historically, the 1921-D halves that were struck by the Denver mint represent the lowest mintage of the series at 208,000 pieces. The end of the First World War, combined with the re-coinage clause of the Pittman Act, forced the Denver Mint to concentrate most of its efforts in 1921 on silver dollar production. While this Colorado branch mint halted the production of cents, nickels, and quarters for this year, it did manage to strike a small number of half dollars. Using just two die pairings, the mint produced a total of 257,672 half dollars pieces. Of this number, Walter Breen asserts that 49,672 pieces never left the Mint----an assertion that explains the mintage figure of 208,000 coins listed in most numismatic reference works. Most of these coins, undoubtedly, saw EXTENSIVE circulation and today mint state examples are in GREAT demand by the collecting community. Seasoned Walker collectors understand the rarity and importance of this key date Walker coin. As with almost all of the 1919, 1920, and 1921 issues, in the Walking Liberty series, the 1921-D is a highly respected and well-known absolute and condition rarity.

Paul Green, in an August 21, 2001 'Numismatic News' article, validates the rarity of the 1921 D and explains the company that it keeps:

" The half dollar of 1921 probably suffered as much in terms of production as any denomination. You could make a strong case that 1921 half-dollar production from all three mint facilities was really just a 'token' amount. There are many great 20th-century coins. The list includes things like the 1909-S Indian cent; 1909-S VDB Lincoln; the 1916-D Mercury dime; any number of Barber dimes, quarters and half dollars; and the 1916 Standing Liberty quarter. To that list of impressive coins we should probably add the 1921-D Walking Liberty half dollar."

In general,the striking quality of the 1921-D is above-average for Denver issues of the period and it is only marginally less well-struck than the 1921 Philadelphia coin. The luster tends to be more of a satin but brilliant, frosty examples exist, although so very many of these coins are dull, muted and damaged from over-dipping. Abrasions are not usually a problem for this issue with some lower grade MS examples having only moderate abrasions. Most MS examples are white and not deeply toned. When toning does exist, it is usually light in shades of tan and/or gold.

Important Varieties:

V 101--doubled date, doubled 'D', doubled 'United' and doubled 'Half Dollar'.

The present coin is a pleasing, near gem, mint state specimen with rich, vibrant, frosty mint luster. As previously stated, this type of luster is exceedingly rare for a key date early Walker, as MANY have stripped and dull surfaces. This piece has prominent luster flow bands on the left and right sides of both the obverse and the reverse of this piece. The striking details are far above average with full head, full skirt-lines and nearly full branch stem hand on the right facing side---it has full thumb and knuckles showing and the index finger is mostly well defined and sharp. The eagle's breast and trailing leg on the reverse are also boldly struck up. While the surfaces and devices are free of any significant abrasions, there are some very light, wispy lines above the motto, in the right facing field, which likely limit the grade. These lines are not visible with the naked eye and must be observed with a 10X loupe with the coin tilted at the right angle in a good light source. This coin is about 98% white with just a few areas of light toning. This example easily carries the MS 64 grade and is better than most NGC AND PCGS examples that I've seen,as this piece has TREMENDOUS eye appeal. In recent years, as the Walking Liberty half dollar has gained in popularity, the 1921-D has really come into its own, and coins such as this desirable near-gem have become particularly prized. This particular coin ranks as a high-end representative of the issue. I was extremely fortunate to have been able to acquire this wonderful example.

The 1921-D is fourth in mint state rarity in the series in absolute terms and fifth in mint state rarity in the series in high grade (MS 65 or better). It's rivaled only by the 1921 San Francisco coin for that year.

There are only about 180 MS 64 survivors extant from both major services but that number is almost certainly inflated.

PCGS Population is 100/35 in MS 64

NGC Census is 79/21 in MS 64

There are about 350 known in all MS grades from both services.

Mintage is at 208,000.

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