Coins - 1963 Proof
The 1963 Proof Set is similar to the proof sets produced earlier in the 60s. The requests to the US Mint for the
1963 proof set were slower in the first half of the year, and though the requests increased in the latter half, the
US Mint quit taking orders after October 1st to make sure they could satisfy the requests already received.
1963 Proof Set Package
The 1963 Proof Set included five coins in clear polyethylene inside an envelope. The outer brown envelope
measured 3.5 inches wide by 6 inches long. The upper left area, normally for the return address, shows:
UNITED STATES MINT
PHILADELPHIA 30, PA.
The lower left corner of the front of the envelope says: 1963 P.C. where P.C. means "Proof Coins."
The US Mint did not add any designs or identifying marks to the back of the proof set envelope.
The 1963 Proof Set package included the sleeve holding the five coins with each coin sealed in its own compartment.
In addition, a sixth compartment held an octagonal seal of silver foil on paper. The blue design on the foil
background shows US MINT and three stars inside a shield with PHILADELPHIA underneath.
The 1963 Proof Set's Half Dollar, Quarter Dollar and Dime consisted of 90% silver and 10% copper. The five cent
coin (nickel) was made of 75% copper and 25% nickel, and the cent was 95% copper and 5% zinc.
1963 Proof Set Contents and Proof Coins
Two pieces of cardboard formed a sandwich around the flat coin set, and the US Mint included their precautionary
note to collectors.
The note for the 1963 Proof Set remained the same as the 1962 note:
The text states:
Your U.S. Proof Coins have been carefully inspected, and then sealed in a transparent envelope.
This package was designed to prevent or delay tarnishing and discoloration. Nevertheless, sooner or later
tarnishing may occur. Care in handling and storing will help to prolong the newly-minted luster of the coins;
heat and direct sunlight are especially harmful.
Please do not ask us to make exchanges or adjustments.
If there should appear - what may seem to you - a defect or scratch on a coin - it is, no
doubt, a crease in the packaging material. We tell you this to save us both unnecessary
The obverse of the 1963 proof coins:
The reverse of the proof coins:
The 1963 Proof Set was the last year to include the Franklin image on the obverse of the half dollar. Franklin's
image was first introduced in 1946 to remind people "that thrifty financial management is as important to
individuals and to society today as it was in Franklin’s time." Franklin's portrait facing right was developed from
a composite of several portraits. The words on the obverse include "LIBERTY" across the top and "IN GOD WE TRUST"
under the portrait with the date to the right of Franklin's neck. The coin's reverse shows the historic Liberty
Bell hanging from its wooden beam with its representative crack. The bell's image was adapted from a similar image
used on a commemorative half dollar in 1926 for the Sesquicentennial of American Independence. "UNITED STATES oF
AMERICA" circles the top half of the reverse with the lettering "E Pluribus Unum" to the left of the bell and an
American eagle with wings outspread to the right. Below the bell, "HALF DOLLAR" is inscribed. (Instead of all
capitals, a small "o" is used in "oF," however it is placed at the top of the "F.")
Obverse Designer: John Sinnock
Reverse Designer: John Sinnock
For fun, take a look at the initial Franklin Half Dollar Press Release
In 1963, the obverse design included the portrait of George Washington and the words: "LIBERTY," "IN GOD WE
TRUST" and the date. The US Mint introduced the quarter dollar with the portrait of our first president in 1932 to
commemorate the 200th anniversary of his birth. On the reverse, an eagle stands with wings
outspread clutching a bunch of arrows in its talons with two olive sprays crossed beneath his tail feathers. The
words on the reverse include: "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA," "E PLURIBUS UNUM" and "QUARTER DOLLAR."
Obverse Designer: John Flanagan
Reverse Designer: John Flanagan
The 1963 dime's obverse shows an image of President Franklin Roosevelt. After his death in 1945 and many
requests to honor the late president, the US Mint released the Roosevelt dime on the late president's birth date in
1946. The words on the obverse include "LIBERTY," "IN GOD WE TRUST" and the year. The coin's reverse shows an olive
branch, a torch and an oak branch with the words "E PLURIBUS UNUM" across them. The words "UNITED STATES OF
AMERICA" flow around the top of the reverse with "ONE DIME" on the bottom.
Obverse Designer: John Sinnock
Reverse Designer: John Sinnock
Five Cents (Nickel):
The US Mint produced the first Jefferson nickels in 1938. The portrait of Jefferson on the coin's obverse copied
the portrait painted by Rembrandt Peale in 1800. Jefferson faces left in the portrait with the profile showing his
prominent forehead and colonial hair. The words on the face of the coin say "IN GOD WE TRUST," "LIBERTY" and the
year. The 1963 nickel's reverse shows Jefferson's historic home, Monticello, in Charlottesville, Virginia. "E
PLURIBUS UNUM" fits above Monticello, and "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA," "MONTICELLO" and "FIVE CENTS" show below the
Obverse Designer: Felix Schlag
Reverse Designer: Felix Schlag
The US Mint presented Abraham Lincoln's image on the obverse of the one cent coin in 1909 to commemorate the
100th anniversary year of his birth. The image shows Lincoln facing to the right in the portrait
with his iconic beard, suit coat and tie. The motto, "IN GOD WE TRUST" was first introduced on coins with the
Lincoln cent. The coin's obverse also includes "LIBERTY" and the date. The 1963 cent's reverse showing the Lincoln
Memorial was young at the time after being first introduced on the cent in 1959 replacing the wheat ears. On the
reverse, the inscription says "UNITED STATES oF AMERICA," "E PLURIBUS UNUM" and "ONE CENT." (Have you noticed all
the letters are capitalized except the "o" in "oF?")
Obverse Designer: Victor D. Brenner
Reverse Designer: Frank Gasparro
1963 Proof Set Year Population and Cost of Living
The world population in 1963 was 3,209,533,214. This represents 46.8% of the world's population in 2010.
$100 in 1963 equals $712.60 in 2010 dollars using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Inflation Calculator.
New houses in 1963 cost an average of $19,300 which would be $137,532 in 2010 dollars.
The average income was $4,397 per year which equals $31,330 in 2010 dollars.
Gas was $0.304 per gallon which would be $2.166 in 2010 money.
The average new car was $2,722 equivalent to $19,396 in 2010.
(Chart views into the cost of living changes throughout the Proof Set