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Classic Commemorative Coins

The ANA's Classic Commemorative Coins online resource highlights the U.S. Mint's early silver commemoratives (1892-1954), which collectors prize for their unique and beautiful designs. These coins memorialize specific people, places and historical events. Topics include everything from native sons and expositions to state and local anniversaries. 

1936 Texas Independence Reverse

The U.S. Mint's classic commemorative era started strong with the World's Columbian Exposition half dollar in 1892. By the 1930s, however, collectors had reached a saturation point. (An astonishing 21 different half dollars were struck in 1936 alone.) After a hiatus of several years, the last coin in the series, the Carver/Washington half dollar, was minted from 1951 to 1954.

Click the links below to review detailed information as well as the broader historical perspective surrounding each coin. In several instances, commemorative experts disagree as to which side represents the obverse and which side represents the reverse. In such situations, the most generally accepted combination is listed.

If you already collect commemoratives, you are in for a treat. If not, perhaps you will be inspired to build a collection of your own!

Acknowledgement: The American Numismatic Association would like to extend special thanks to staff members Rod Gillis, Andy Dickes and Robert B. Kelley for their valuable research and assistance with this project.

Photo Credits: The J & L Collection/Mike Printz

Please note: images may not be used without written permission from ANA and/or Mike Printz.
1892-1893 World’s columbian exposition Banner 1892-1893 World's Columbian Exposition Half Dollar

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1893 columbian exposition isabella Banner 1892-1893 World's Columbian Exposition Isabella Quarter

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1900 Lafayette Memorial Banner 1900 Lafayette Memorial Dollar

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1915 panama-pacific international exposition Banner 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition Half Dollar

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1918 illinois Banner 1918 Illinois Centennial Half Dollar

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1920 maine Banner 1920 Maine Centennial Half Dollar

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1920-1921 pilgrim banner 1920-1921 Pilgrim Tercentenary Half Dollar

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1921 alabama Banner 1921 Alabama Centennial Half Dollar

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1921 Missouri Centennial Banner 1921 Missouri Centennial Half Dollar

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1922 grant memorial banner 1922 Grant Memorial Half Dollar

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1923 monroe doctrine Banner 1923 Monroe Doctrine Centennial Half Dollar

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1924 Huguenot-Walloon Banner 1924 Huguenot-Walloon Tercentenary Half Dollar

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1925 california diamond jubilee Banner 1925 California Diamond Jubilee Half Dollar

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1925 fort Vancouver Banner 1925 Fort Vancouver Centennial Half Dollar

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1925 lexington- concord Banner 1925 Lexington-Concord Sesquicentennial Half Dollar

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1925 stone mountain Banner 1925 Stone Mountain Memorial Half Dollar

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1926-1939 oregon trail Banner 1926-1939 Oregon Trail Memorial Half Dollar

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1926 sesquicentennial of american independence Banner 1926 Sesquicentennial of American Independence Half Dollar

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1927 vermont Banner 1927 Vermont Sesquicentennial Half Dollar

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1928 hawaiian Banner 1928 Hawaiian Sesquicentennial Half Dollar

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1934-1938 daniel boone Banner 1934-1938 Daniel Boone Bicentennial Half Dollar

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1934 maryland Banner 1934 Maryland Tercentenary Half Dollar

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1934-1938 texas Banner 1934-1938 Texas Centennial Half Dollar

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1935-1939 arkansas centennial banner 1935-1939 Arkansas Centennial Half Dollar

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1935-1936 california- pacific exposition (san diego) Banner 1935-1936 California-Pacific Exposition (San Diego) Half Dollar

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1935 connecticut Banner 1935 Connecticut Tercentenary Half Dollar

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1935 hudson new york banner 1935 Hudson, New York, Sesquicentennial Half Dollar

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1935 old spanish trail Banner 1935 Old Spanish Trail Half Dollar

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1936 albany new york charter banner 1936 Albany, New York, Charter Half Dollar

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1936 arkansas - robinson Banner 1936 Arkansas - Robinson Half Dollar

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936 battle of gettysburg Banner 1936 Battle of Gettysburg Half Dollar

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1936 Bridgeport, Connecticut, Centennial Half Dollar Banner 1936 Bridgeport, Connecticut, Centennial Half Dollar

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1936 cincinnati music center Banner 1936 Cincinnati Music Center Half Dollar

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1936 cleveland centennial and great lakes Banner 1936 Cleveland Centennial and Great Lakes Exposition Half Dollar

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1936 columbia,south carolina Banner 1936 Columbia, South Carolina, Sesquicentennial Half Dollar

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1936 delaware Banner 1936 Delaware Tercentenary Half Dollar

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1936 elgin, illinois Banner 1936 Elgin, Illinois, Centennial Half Dollar

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1936 long island Banner 1936 Long Island Tercentenary

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1936 lynchburg, virginia Banner 1936 Lynchburg, Virginia, Sesquicentennial Half Dollar

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1936 norfolk, virginia Banner 1936 Norfolk, Virginia, Bicentennial Half Dollar

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1936 providence, rhode island Banner 1936 Providence, Rhode Island, Tercentenary Half Dollar

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1936 san francisco-oakland bay bridge Banner 1936 San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge Half Dollar

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1936 wisconsin _territorial banner 1936 Wisconsin Territorial Centennial Half Dollar

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1936 york county maine banner 1936 York County, Maine Tercentenary Half Dollar

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1937 battle of antietam Banner 1937 Battle of Antietam Half Dollar

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1937 roanoke colonization 350th anniversary Banner 1937 Roanoke Colonization 350th Anniversary Half Dollar

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1938 new rochelle, new york Banner 1938 New Rochelle, New York, 250th Anniversary Half Dollar

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1946 iowa statehood banner 1946 Iowa Statehood Centennial Half Dollar

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1946-1951 booker t. washington Banner 1946-1951 Booker T. Washington Half Dollar

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1951-1954 carver_washington banner 1951-1954 Carver/Washington Half Dollar

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