Numismatics I: Franklin Halves

Investing in stocks, cryptocurrency, and the like can be fun, but what’s better is actually having something to hold. Even better is when it’s fine silver.

Back when I was barely learning how to go broke, one of my grandfathers would always have a set of coins stashed away when I visited. Every time he brought them out, I couldn’t wait to count them up. I would then hurry away home and put them in my steel piggy bank that was handed down to me.

Unfortunately, I never could wait until it filled up. What’s worse is that the steel piggy bank did not have a hole you could just unplug to retrieve the coins. So what does a little broke me do? I would rock the piggy bank back and forth to let the coins come right back out. Long story short, I spent ALL of my saved up coins, EVERY TIME.

On top of that, I have another grandpa that loves to collect coins. If only I could have put two and two together. As the saying goes, “If I only knew what I know now.”, fortunately, there’s all the time in the world to get back into financial shape. On that note, let’s talk about numismatics.

Numismatics is the study/collection of currency. Currency can include coins, tokens, paper money, and any other vehicle that is used to resolve debts and exchange goods. If you want to get better at handling money, you need to have an appreciation for money. That’s why The Broke Investor recommends to pick coin collecting as a hobby.


To start off, I want to review the Benjamin Franklin Half Dollars. The silver Franklin half dollar series was issued from 1948 through 1963 and was minted in honor of one of United States most notable founding father, Benjamin Franklin. As we all know, Benjamin Franklin was a statesman, diplomat, scientist, inventor, printer, publisher, etc, etc.

What many might not know is that the Franklin half dollar series was the first regular-issue coin in United States history to feature an actual person who was not a president. It was also the last U.S. coin minted, every year, in .900 fine silver.

The obverse (head) features Franklin and the reverse (tails) has the cracked Liberty Bell. Benjamin Franklin is one of my favorite founding fathers just because of his humble beginnings and is the embodiment of the American Dream.

I actually did not know a silver Franklin half dollar existed until recently. Now, I am wanting to collect every coin from 1948-1963. In addition, there are some years where all 3 locations (Philadelphia, San Fransisco, and Denver) minted the coin. So far, I have 1951-S, 1957-P, and 1958-P. You can see where it was minted right above the Liberty Bell. S for San Fransisco, D for Denver, and no letter for Philadelphia.

As always, 
Keep growing, keep investing.

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