USA 1817 Capped Bust Half Dollars
The Capped Bust Half Dollar was an American silver half dollar minted from 1807-1839. The original design for the “Capped Bust” by John Reich was later modified by the chief engraver of the United States Mint William Kneass. Reich’s design was used from 1807-1833, however after his resignation in 1817, Kneass decided to modify the portrait of Liberty. In 1834, the design was modified, and from 1834-1836 it would remain that way. From 1836-1839, Kneass would modify Liberty’s portrait twice more, before his death in 1840. Throughout the years of its mintage, the Capped Bust half dollar underwent numerous variety strikes as a direct result of the mint’s inconsistency with the die’s. Collectors will note from 1807-1836, almost every year has several different varieties, some within the same year. The Capped Bust half dollar has an approximate purity of .8924 silver, .1076 copper, a total weight of 13.48 grams, and a diameter of 32.5 mm.