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Commemoratives from 1892-1954

The 1892 Columbian Exposition half dollar was the first commemorative coin authorized by Congress. From 1892 through 1954, subsequent legislation authorized the U.S. Mint to produce commemorative coins for 53 different events, occasions, or individuals. This resulted in the Mint producing a total of 157 silver and gold commemorative coins.

As early as 1925, many in Congress expressed concern over bills introduced to "...commemorate events of local and not national interest..." After extensive hearings on the "objectionable practices and abuses related to the issuance of special coins", as published in House Report No. 101, issued February 27, 1939, Congress passed legislation prohibiting "...the issuance and coinage of certain commemorative coins..." (Public Law No. 278-76th Congress - Approved August 5, 1939), which also halted the issue of all commemorative coins already approved.

With the exception of Acts signed on August 7, 1946, for the Iowa Centennial and Booker T. Washington half dollars, and an amendment to one of these in 1951 for the (George Washington) Carver-(Booker T.) Washington half dollar, no further coins were authorized. Produced from 1951 through 1954, the Carver-Washington half dollar was the last of the pre-modern commemorative coin programs.

Commemoratives from 1892-1954

1951-54
George Washington Carver-Booker T. WashingtonHalf Dollar
1946-51
Booker T. Washington Memorial Half Dollar
1946
Iowa Centennial Half Dollar
1938
New Rochelle, New York Half Dollar
1937
Roanoke Island, North Carolina Half Dollar
1937
Battle of Antietam Half Dollar
1936
York County, Maine Tercentenary Half Dollar
1936
Wisconsin Territorial Centennial Half Dollar
1936
Robinson-Arkansas Centennial Half Dollar
1936
Providence, Rhode Island Tercentenary Half Dollar
1936
Norfolk, Virginia Bicentennial Half Dollar
1936
Lynchburg, Virginia Sesquicentennial Half Dollar
1936
Long Island Tercentenary Half Dollar
1936
Battle of Gettysburg Half Dollar
1936
Elgin, Illinois Centennial Half Dollar
1936
Delaware Tercentenary Half Dollar
1936
Columbia, South Carolina Sesquicentennial Half Dollar
1936
Cleveland Great Lakes Exposition Half Dollar
1936
Cincinnati Music Center Half Dollar
1936
Bridgeport, Connecticut Centennial Half Dollar
1936
Bay Bridge San Francisco-Oakland Half Dollar
1936
Albany, New York Charter Half Dollar
1935-36
San Diego-California-Pacific Exposition Half Dollar
1935
Old Spanish Trail Half Dollar
1935
Hudson, New York Sesquicentennial Half Dollar
1935
Connecticut Tercentenary Half Dollar
1935-39
Arkansas Centennial Half Dollar
1934-38
Texas Centennial Half Dollar
1934
Maryland Tercentenary Half Dollar
1934-38
Daniel Boone Bicentennial Half Dollar
1928
Hawaiian Sesquicentennial Half Dollar
1927
Vermont Sesquicentennial (Bennington) Half Dollar
1926
Sesquicentennial of American Independence Quarter Eagle
1926
Sesquicentennial of American Independence Half Dollar
1926, 1928,
1933-34, 1936-39
Oregon Trail Memorial Half Dollar
1925
Fort Vancouver Centennial Half Dollar
1925
Stone Mountain Memorial Half Dollar
1925
Lexington-Concord Sesquicentennial Half Dollar
1925
California Diamond Jubilee Half Dollar
1924
Huguenot-Walloon Tercentenary Half Dollar
1923
Monroe Doctrine Centennial Half Dollar
1922
Grant Memorial Gold Dollar
1922
Grant Memorial Half Dollar
1921
Missouri Centennial Half Dollar
1921
Alabama Centennial Half Dollar
1920-21
Pilgrim Tercentenary Half Dollar
1920
Maine Centennial Half Dollar
1918
Illinois Centennial Half Dollar
1916-17
McKinley Memorial Gold Dollar
1915
Panama-Pacific Exposition Gold $50 (Octagonal)
1915
Panama-Pacific Exposition Gold $50 (Round)
1915
Panama-Pacific Exposition Quarter-Eagle
1915
Panama-Pacific Exposition Gold Dollar
1915
Panama-Pacific Exposition Half Dollar
1904-05
Lewis and Clark Exposition Gold Dollar
1903
Louisiana Purchase Exposition Gold Dollar (McKinley)
1903
Louisiana Purchase Exposition Gold Dollar (Jefferson)
1900
Lafayette Dollar
1893
Queen Isabella Quarter Dollar
1892-93
Columbian Exposition Half Dollar
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