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Coin and Paper Money Collecting/1976 Keneddy Half Dollar - One Star did not print

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Dear Mr. Fern,

I appreciate you taking the time to look at my question. In 1976 I received as change from the Post Office a 1776 - 1976 Kennedy half dollar.  On the back of the coin is the picture of Independence Hall with the 13 stars below representing the 13 original colonies.  The second star from the left didn't print.  It appears of be a small blob of molten metal, but not a star.

I have never seen a Half dollar like this, but was offered $5 for it by a local collector in 1976 shortly after I received it. Have you seen another coin like this? It has not been in circulation since I received the coin and I keep it in my lock box.  Any idea of it's value. Thanks.

Answer
1976 Half Error
1976 Half Error  
Don:

Pictures always help. Based on your limited description, I'd say you likely have a filled die error. A filled die is the result of a foreign substance, grease, grime, dirt, etc., getting on the die surface when the coin blanks are struck, leaving a blank or partially blank area on the struck coin. The retail value of a minor filled die half like yours would likely be in the $10 to $15 range to an interested collector. I've attached a file photo of a reverse filled die bi-centennial half for your reference.

Sometimes people try and fool you into thinking you have a real error coin. Here are examples of coins either being altered or damaged.
See link: http://coinauctionshelp.com/page15.html
See link: http://conecaonline.org/content/OhNo.htm

Check eBay listing under US coins in the error category to see if coins like yours are listed and what they are going for. You may also want to check out these links on error coin values:
http://www.coinsite.com/html/USErrorPrices.asp
http://www.minterrornews.com/priceguide.html
http://coinauctionshelp.com/page14.html

If you live close to a local shop, they should offer an opinion as to it's value and if it is authentic at no charge. Remember, should you choose to sell your coin, get at least two estimates from professional coin dealers (PNG). I've listed a link for you to find them in your area. Link: http://www.pngdealers.com/dealersearch.php

Dealers normally pay between 50% to 60% of retail for items they want.

Please remember to go to the experts site to rate this answer. Check the nomination box on the rating page below any comments you may have.

Thank You and Good Luck in your collecting.

Coin and Paper Money Collecting

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Ronald Fern

Expertise

I can answer most all questions relating to US coins, tokens, and currency. I'm not strong on world coins or ancients. Primary field of expertise is errors and varieties. Over 55 years experience in coin collecting. Part time dealer since 1976. Employed by McDonnell Douglas/Boeing for over 34 years as an Industrial Engineer/Technical Specialist before retiring in 2002.

Experience

Worked weekends for "Lonesome" John in the late 1960's to mid 1970's processing error coins, packaging, and preparing orders. Worked with John Devine and Fred Weinberg on several California Error A Rama's in the early 1970's. Served as display judge at annual Error-A-Rama coin shows. Opened and operated mail order coin business DBA "CAL ERRORS" in 1976. Contributor to Alan Herbert's "Official Price Guide To Mint Errors" and Fivaz/Stanton "Cherrypickers' Guide". Worked Saturdays at Huntington Beach Coin Exchange 1980-1999. Had table and sold coins at a number of coin and gun shows in So CA, AZ and NV. Sell coins, tokens and currency on Facebook. Past "Errorscope" Editor. Presently CONECA Examiner.

Organizations
ANA, CONECA, CWTS, NLG

Publications
Errorscope, Numismatic News, Civil War Token Journal, Error and Variety News

Education/Credentials
AA Degree LBCC pre Engineering, 1964 BS Degree CSULB Ind Technology, 1968

Awards and Honors
1st Place EAR Trophy for Civil War Token Errors, NLG Author of Year Award for best monthly coin column "Error News and Views" in small Numismatic paper, owned and published by Ray Anthony.

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