The following Q&A is excerpted from Clifford Mishler’s Coins: Questions & Answers, 5th edition:
Q: Through the years I’ve set aside a lot of 1964 Kennedy halves, every one I’ve come across, as I once heard that they are quite valuable. Can you tell me how much my coins are worth?
A: Your coins are probably not particularly valuable. Highly cherished as keepsakes when they were first issued, and for many years regarded as the most respected tip an American traveling overseas could extend, that fascination with 1964 Kennedy’s has now largely passed. Actually, regardless of their grade, they are probably worth less than any of the predecessor Franklin type halves, which you could have been putting away to a somewhat greater advantage during this time. In 1964, more than 277 million halves were struck at Philadelphia and 156 million at Denver, a figure which more than quadruples the previous high half dollar coinage total for a given year. In the circulated grade range, their worth is based on the bullion value of their silver content, while most Franklin halves in the upper circulated grades command modest collector premiums. In the Uncirculated grade range, Franklin halves generally command premiums at least triple those enjoyed by 1964 Kennedy’s; for Proofs, multiples of five or more.