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Friday, April 9, 2010

USA half dollar-Kennedy

Kennedy bicentennial,1976: independence hall
usa kennedy half dollar 1976 bicentennial independence hall
The obverse shows the Kennedy head and the reverse shows the independence hall. Independence Hall is a U.S. national landmark located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on Chestnut Street between 5th and 6th Streets. Known primarily as the location where both the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution were debated and adopted, the building was completed in 1753 as the Pennsylvania State House for the Province of Pennsylvania. It became the principal meeting place of the Second Continental Congress from 1775 to 1783 and was the site of the Constitution Convention in the summer of 1787. The building is part of Independence National Historical Park and is listed as a World Heritage Site.

Kennedy half dollar, 1971
USA half dollar kennedy 1971The Kennedy half dollar came into circulation roughly three months after the assassination of the then president John Fitzgerald Kennedy, often referred to as JFK. It replaced the Franklin half dollar a good 9 years before the coin was eligible for a change after a bill was hurriedly passed in the congress following the assassination. The first Kennedy half dollar came out in 1964 which was 90% silver. Because of rising silver prices, in 1965 it was changed to silver clad coin having about 40% silver content. In 1971, the composition was changed to the current standard of copper-nickel clad copper and the silver was removed completely. The coin features the Kennedy head on the obverse and an eagle on the reverse, which is also the seal of the president of the united states.

John F. Kennedy (1917-1963) was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963.

After Kennedy's military service as commander of the Motor Torpedo Boat PT-109 during World War II in the South Pacific, his aspirations turned political. With the encouragement and grooming of his father, Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr., Kennedy represented Massachusetts's 11th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1947 to 1953 as a Democrat, and served in the U.S. Senate from 1953 until 1960. Kennedy defeated then Vice President and Republican candidate Richard Nixon in the 1960 U.S. presidential election, one of the closest in American history. He was the second-youngest President (after Theodore Roosevelt), the first President born in the 20th century, and the youngest elected to the office, at the age of 43. Kennedy is the first and only Catholic and the first Irish American president, and is the only president to have won a Pulitzer Prize.Events during his administration include the Bay of Pigs Invasion, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the building of the Berlin Wall, the Space Race, the African American Civil Rights Movement and early stages of the Vietnam War.

Kennedy was assassinated on November 22, 1963, in Dallas, Texas. Lee Harvey Oswald was charged with the crime but was shot and killed two days later by Jack Ruby before he could be put on trial. The FBI, the Warren Commission, and the House Select Committee on Assassinations concluded that Oswald was the assassin, with the HSCA allowing for the probability of conspiracy based on disputed acoustic evidence. The event proved to be an important moment in U.S. history because of its impact on the nation and the ensuing political repercussions. Today, Kennedy continues to rank highly in public opinion ratings of former U.S. presidents.

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