Classic Coins - Grant Memorial
The Grant Memorial Half Dollar Coin commemorated the 100th anniversary of Ulysses S. Grant's birth and helped
defray costs for memorial sites and a highway in Ohio.
Characteristics - size, weight, metal content, value range
Obverse - picture, description, artist
Reverse - picture, description, artist
Commentary - coin notes, mintage information, historical comments, fun
President Ullysses S. Grant was born on April 27, 1822 in Point Pleasant, Ohio.
The 67th Congress approved, "An act to authorize the coinage of a Grant memorial gold dollar and a Grant
memorial silver half dollar in commemoration of the centenary of the birth of General Ulysses S. Grant, late
President of the United States."
When approved on February 2, 1922, this Act became noted as Public Law 67-137.
The law began, "That for the purpose of aiding in defraying the cost of erecting a community building in the
village of Georgetown, Brown County, Ohio,, and a like building in the village of Bethel, Clermont County, Ohio, as
a memorial to Ulysses S. Grant, late President of the United States, and for the purpose of constructing a
highway five miles in length from New Richmond, Ohio to Point Pleasant, Clermont County, Ohio, the place of birth
of Ulysses S. Grant, to be known as the Grant Memorial Road..."
The law noted there would be 250,000 Grant memorial silver half dollars "to be of a standard Troy weight,
composition, diameter and design as shall be fixed by the Director of the Mint and approved by the Secretary
of the Treasury, which said coins shall be legal tender to the amount of their face value..."
The law concluded the authorization with the Proviso: "That the United States shall not be subject to
the expense of making the necessary dies and other preparations for this coinage."
Characteristics - Grant Memorial Half
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
Years Minted: 1922
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 $85 (low grade - XF) to $11,800 (high grade - MS-66).
Extraordinary characteristics on the Grant Memorial Half Dollar can command a price outside the
estimated value range.
Obverse - Grant Memorial Half
The front or obverse of the coin has a strong profile portrait of General Grant with his iconic beard.
Roughly seven percent of the distributed coins contain a recessed 5-point star located above the
"N" in Grant and below the tip of the "A" at the end of America.
The coinage inscriptions include United States of America, Half Dollar, Ulysses S. Grant, 1822-1922.
Artist: Laura Gardin Fraser
Reverse - Grant Memorial Half
The artist modeled the design on the reverse or back of the coin based on a sketch of the historic log
cabin in which Grant was born.
The coinage inscriptions say, In God We Trust and E Pluribus Unum.
Artist: Laura Gardin Fraser
Commentary - Grant Memorial Half
Though the stated mintage was 250,000, records show roughly 72,000 were distributed.
The coins with the recessed star retain a higher value across the grading scale than do the larger number of
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 in higher grades such as an MS-66 grade.
President Grant's birth name was Hiram Ulysses Grant. In the letter nominating him to attend the Military
Academy in West Point, NY, his Congressman included his name as Ulysses S. Grant.
Grant kept the name, and his classmates called him "Sam" for his first initials of U.S. representing "Uncle
From 1890 to 1936, Grant's small Point Pleasant home toured the country, and for a time, was displayed at the
Ohio State Fair in Columbus. In 1936, the home returned to its original site.
Several scandals plagued President Grant, one of which was Black Friday on September 24, 1869.
Two men, James Fisk and Jay Gould, solicited Grant's brother-in-law to help them corner the market on
By buying and hoarding gold, Fisk and Gould drove the market price to $162, which would be over $2800 in today's
President Grant released government gold making the market fall dramatically.
The economy took several months to recover amid the scandal and the Congressional investigations.
Visit our GACS Numismatic Shoppe Grant Memorial for a variety of
useful items decorated with images of the classic commemorative silver half dollar coin.