[The following excerpt is published courtesy of DLRC Press and its author, Bruce Fox. This information was originally published in 1993 in The Complete Guide to Walking Liberty Half Dollars]
PROOFS: Possibly 5-9
VARIETIES: None Reported.
SCARCITY: This issue was saved, as is typical for most first year issues. MS65 examples with full or nearly full strikes are available. Circulated pieces are readily available, but still not considered common.
RARITY RATING: G/VG R2; F/VF R3; EF/AU R2; MS60/MS63 R3; MS64 R3; MS65 R3
RARITY CONSENSUS: G/VG 8/65; F/VF 9/65; EF/AU 17/65; MS60/MS62 24/65; MS63 26/65; MS64 25/65; MS65 26/65
TOTAL MS PCGS/NGC/ANACS = 603 (Ranking 26/65).
TOTAL PRF PCGS/NGC/ANACS: None
COMMENTS:This date and mint usually comes with a nearly full strike. However, as is typical with all issues through 1921, Liberty’s gown lines are weak. This was most likely caused by lack of engraving details on the working dies and/or weaker than needed striking force on the presses dialed in to preserve the die. Most of the 1916, as well as some of the 1917 issues (at least the 1917-D (OBV)) have a flat rim that appears to serve as a frame for the beautiful design details. The 1916 and 1917 series also have a satin, somewhat grainy finish. Walter Breen indicates that possibly 9 satin finish proofs exist. The sharp central details and borders are typical of other matte proofs. Their origin is a matter of conjecture. Some experts believe they are multiple strikes at high striking pressures performed as “favor” pieces for dignitaries. Investment potential is excellent for grades MS65 and higher (see Appendix A).