Coin Collecting at the Safir House
Walking Liberty Half Dollars

Sun Aug 20 22:30:26 2017
The Design of the Walking Liberty Half Dollar is considered in some circles to be one of the most beautiful ones ever on a coin. Part of the wave of post Teddy Roosevelt redesigns of American coinage, this design, along with the Mercury Dime and Standing Liberty Quarter was the first set of US coins that weren't uniform. The designer was Alfred A Weinman, and shows the Anthological Liberty gracefully striding in the wind with the sun setting (or perhaps rising) in the background.

The design of the coin was a serious departure from previous designs with a full bodied and complex design with liberty in 3/4 view and in great detail. The reverse is a perched eagle, also in 3/4 view, all of which must have added to the dramatic impact that the coin had upon its release to the public.

There was a significant feeling when this coin was released that it replaced a coin which was largely a failure in design in the Barber Half Dollar. That is an opinion which I believe was largely incorrect. The Barber design was an especially fine coinage design which worked and was quite beautiful well through out the life of the coins. But the Walking Liberty is a dramatic change, especially in the relative conservative era of coin design in the 1910's, being released at the same time as the Standing Liberty Quarter.

I have one exaple of a Walking Liberty Half, and this scan of the coin doesn't do the coin justice. The coin itself has wonderful luster for a AU grade silver piece.


Some of the highlights of this design is that collectors count the number of fingers that are extended, the stars in the Flag that is wrapped around Liberty's shoulders should be visible and crisp, the wreath should be clear and the suns rays should be complete.

This particular example of the Walking Liberty has been a bit hard to photograph well. The above images are scans, but fail to show the luster of the coin. These are photo's of the same coin.

There has been an interesting discussion on the grading of this coin at cointalk. Its worth reading to understand how coins are graded and the characteristics of Walkers in general.

The design was returned for the American Silver Eagle Series in 1986, and continues today. Proof examples of the silver dollar bring out even more of the design in all its glory.

A mention should be made here at this point about the general trend of American icons, mounuments, and depictions of Liberty as a symbol of America. Unlike most European nations and monuments, and as clear break from Roman tradition, American depictions of Liberty and never armed, with swords drawn. It is not within the American mythos that our liberty and freedom is violent in nature. We have several examples of shields, but from the Statue of Liberty, through nearly every symbol of the United States, our symbols are representitives of peace. This walking liberty is a fine example of American liberty based on prosperity and peace.


Coin Forum Links

Coin Collectors Hangout
Last 10 Topics

The Safir Family Internet Coins Library.

Click to see these examples show below including photography: note to lawyer: most of the good stuff is gone
Section I:
US Coints
Large Cent Coppers
Flying Eagle Cents
Lincoln Cents and Wheat Backs
Buffalo Nickels
Jefferson Nickels
Jefferson Silver War Nickels
Bust Half Dimes
Mercury (Liberrty Head) Dimes
Roosevelt Dime
Barber Quarter Dollars
Standing Libery Quarter
Washington and Washington State Quarters
Cap Bust Half Dollars
Seated Half Dollars
Barber Half Dollars
Walking Liberty Half Dollars
Franklin Half Dollars
Kennedy Half Dollars
Morgan Silver Dollars
Peace Silver Dollars
Eisenhower Clad and Silver Dollars
Sacawagea Golden Dollars
Modern Silver and Clad Proof Sets
Modern American Silver Eagle uncirculated mint coins and proofs
Modern Silver and Clad 2008 Commorative Bald Eagle Series
Gold Coins - Not too many
Circulated US Silver Coins prior to 1964

Go To Section II:
Modern and Ancient Foreign Coins from Outside The United States

Go To Section III:
Mandy's 25th Anniversary World Wildlife Fund Silver Coins

Unsorted Extra stuff:
Bust US Coinage
From the coin Show at Melville Long Island

The Safir Family Internet Coins Library: Foriegn Coins.

Several mints from around the world make exciting coin designs in circulating alloys, silver and gold. Among my favorites are the Perth Mint in Austrailia which produces a variety of coins for nations mostly through out the Pacific Rim. The Neatherlands has also produced some interesting designs, and several private US based mints have produced foreign currency on contract, include the Franklin Mint which has produced many Israeli Coins.
Our interest in foreign coins has been nominal but rapidly growing as it seems that US designs are so stuck in the mud. Also, foreign mints are creating bold new designs with color and bimetal designs that are both eye catching and fun.

Ruben Safir's Front Page
Coin Collection