Classic Coins - Columbia SC
Sesquicentennial Half Dollar
With a 1936 coinage date, the US Mint produced the Columbia SC Sesquicentennial Half Dollar Classic
Commemorative Coin to recognize the 150th anniversary of the founding of the capital of South Carolina.
Characteristics - size, weight, metal content, value range
Obverse - picture, description, artist
Reverse - picture, description, artist
Commentary - coin notes, mintage information, historical comments, fun
On March 18, 1936, the second session of the 74th Congress approved an act which became Public Law
74-476 that authorized "the coinage of 50-cent pieces in commemoration of the sesquicentennial anniversary of the
founding of the capital of South Carolina at Columbia, South Carolina."
The law began, "That, in commemoration of the one hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the
capital of South Carolina at Columbia, South Carolina, there shall be coined by the Director of the Mint
twenty-five thousand silver 50-cent pieces, such coins to be of standard size, weight, and fineness of a special
appropriate design to be fixed by the Director of the Mint, with the approval of the Secretary of the Treasury, but
the United States shall not be subject to the expense of making the model for master dies or other preparations for
"SEC. 2. Coins commemorating the founding of the capital of South Carolina at Columbia, South Carolina, shall be
issued at par, and only upon the request of a committee of not less than three persons duly authorized by the mayor
of the city of Columbia, South Carolina.
"SEC. 3. Such coins may be disposed of at par or at a premium by the committee, duly authorized in section 2,
and all proceeds shall be used in furtherance of the commemoration of the founding of the capital of South Carolina
at Columbia, South Carolina."
The law continues in Section 4 stating that all laws already in place applying to coinage shall also apply to
"SEC. 5. The coins authorized herein shall be issued in such numbers, and at such times as they may be requested
by the committee, duly authorized by said mayor of Columbia, South Carolina, only upon payment to the United States
of the face value of such coins."
Characteristics - Columbia SC
Sesquicentennial Half Dollar
Metal Composition: 90% Silver, 10% Copper
Diameter - millimeters: 30.6
Diameter - inches: 1.2
Weight - grams: 12.5
Weight - troy ounce: 0.401884332
Silver content weight - troy ounce: 0.3617
Mint Locations: Philadelphia, Denver, San Francisco
Years Minted: 1936
The coin's silver content alone makes it more valuable than its face value of $0.50.
But, the coin's age, its condition, and its desirability make it even more valuable as a collectible.
The coin's estimated value ranges from $180 (low grade - XF) to $270 (high grade - MS-66).
Extraordinary characteristics on the Columbia SC Sesquicentennial Half Dollar can command a price outside the
estimated value range.
Obverse - Columbia SC Sesquicentennial Half
The obverse or front of the coin shows a figure representing Justice with scales and a sword, which is flanked
by images of the original and present capitol buildings.
The coinage inscriptions say, Columbia, South Carolina, Sesquicentennial Celebration of the Capital,
Liberty, and 1786 1936.
Artist: A. Wolfe Davidson
Reverse - Columbia SC Sesquicentennial Half
The reverse or back of the coin features the palmetto tree, a symbol of South Carolina, with oak and ribbon
binding stars at the base, and with an additional 13 stars encircling the tree.
The coinage inscriptions read United States of America, Half Dollar, E Pluribus Unum, and In God We Trust.
Artist: A. Wolfe Davidson
Commentary - Columbia SC Sesquicentennial Half
The stated mintage was "twenty-five thousand silver 50-cent pieces" and "coined by the Director of the
Records show all three mints - Philadelphia, Denver and San Francisco - produced the coin for an overall
total of just over 25,000 of the Columbia SC Sesquicentennial half dollar coins.
The coin pictured above resides in an NGC holder and is graded as an MS-65. (NGC, Numismatic Guaranty
Corporation, provides coin grading and certification services.)
Versions of the coin also exist across a variety of the grades.
The South Carolina flag includes a Palmetto tree and what looks to be a crescent moon on a blue field.
Colonel William Moultrie designed South Carolina's first flag for the troops during the Revolutionary War.
That first flag used a blue field to match their uniforms and had a crescent like the one on their caps in
the upper left.
In January 1861, the South Carolina General Assembly made all flags flown earlier and through their
They adopted the current flag which took Colonel Moultrie's design and added the Palmetto tree to its
The tree symbolized Colonel Moultrie's defense of the palmetto-log fort on Sullivan's Island against the attack
by the British in 1776.
In 1928, a plaque was placed outside the South Carolina House of Representatives honoring the four South
Carolinians that signed the Declaration of Independence.
The Daughters of the American Revolution took charge of the opening day ceremonies of the Columbia, South
Carolina sesquicentennial celebration in March 1936.
As part of the festivities, the DAR unveiled a bronze plaque at the state house to honor the four men from
South Carolina that signed the federal constitution.
They place the new plaque outside the Senate chamber to match the earlier one at the House of
Visit our GACS Numismatic Shoppe Columbia SC Sesquicentennial for a
variety of useful items decorated with images of the classic commemorative silver half dollar coin.