Discover the History Behind America's Beloved Liberty Walking Half Dollar!

Liberty Walking Half Dollars

Liberty Walking half dollars were struck in 90% silver from 1916-1947, spanning two world wars, the Roaring Twenties and the Great Depression. These coins are widely considered the most beautiful silver coins ever struck by the United States Mint.

Did you know...

  • Due to the popularity of the obverse, it was brought back in 1986 for the American Silver Eagle.
  • Adolph A. Weinman, renowned sculptor who designed the Liberty Walking Half Dollar as well as the Mercury Dime.

    Designed by Adolph A. Weinman – who worked with famed sculptor Augustus Saint‑Gaudens.
  • The Liberty Walking half dollar came from a 1916 coin design competition (along with the Mercury dime and Standing Liberty quarter)!
  • Obverse features a beautiful depiction of Liberty striding toward the dawn of a new day.
  • This half dollar's classical beauty represented the spirit and sentiment of the nation as it hoped to remain neutral during the unrest in Europe that was leading to America's involvement in World War I.
  • The lowest-mintage issues of the series are the 1921 coin, of which only 246,000 were struck, and the 1921‑D, with a mintage of only 208,000 coins.

Explore America's history during this popular half dollar series

  • When the Liberty Walking half dollar was introduced in 1916, Woodrow Wilson narrowly gained a second term as president of the United States – and the nation grew closer to the brink of war.
  • The Liberty Walking Silver Half Dollar spanned four decades and two world wars!

    The First World War saw the first significant use of airplanes. Originally intended only for observation, rival pilots began firing pistols and rifles at each other – and soon, the planes were equipped with machine guns for in-air combat. The ace of aces was Baron Manfred von Richthofen, the Red Knight of Germany, with 80 victories. Eddie Rickenbacker was the top American ace.
  • Although the 1920s were filled with a new liberalism in lifestyle and entertainment, it was also the era of Prohibition. The market for illegal liquor was enormous. And as one could expect, the suppliers and distributors of "bootleg" were heavily armed gangsters led by the likes of "Scarface" Al Capone and George "Bugs" Moran.
  • The 1920s were a decade that offered a vast array of new consumer goods – radios, refrigerators, toasters, irons, record players, vacuum cleaners and washing machines, plus the automobile, which was changing the entire landscape of American life.
  • In 1929, the prosperity of the Roaring Twenties came to a halt when the stock market crashed, leading to the Great Depression.
  • In 1932, with some 25% of the work force unemployed, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt stepped in. He brought a shrewd combination of practical politics and personal leadership to the White House, and his "New Deal" kicked off a national plan for economic revival.
  • Orson Welles tells America about an invasion from Mars

    On Halloween night in 1938, Orson Welles presented simulated newscasts about an invasion force from Mars landing in the New Jersey countryside. The show was so realistic that thousands of people panicked, piled into their cars, and clogged the highways out of New Jersey!
  • At the start of 1940, with tensions increasing in Europe, President Roosevelt asked Congress for the greatest peacetime military build-up in U.S. history.
  • On the morning of December 7, 1941, the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor was attacked, launching the nation into World War II.
  • World War II ended in 1945. During the next two years (the final two years of the Liberty Walking half dollar), returning servicemen and women readjusted to life stateside.