1888 Liberty Seated Half Dollar. WB-101. MS-66+ (PCGS). CAC.Electric blue iridescence frames heavily toned pink and lilac centers on this highly lustrous, satin textured Gem half dollar. The strike is full as well and the surfaces are virtually pristine. The 1888 continues a run of low mintage circulation strike half dollars that began in 1879, the mintage of this date only 12,001 pieces. The Bland-Allison Act of 1878 resulted in the Mint focusing much of its attention on production of the new Morgan dollar at the expense of the other silver denominations. As well, large quantities of half dollars that had been hoarded during the Civil War and Reconstruction eras found their way back into circulation beginning in the mid 1870s, precluding the production of large numbers of new coins until the introduction of the Barber series in 1892. In fact, the token circulation strike mintages of Liberty Seated half dollars from 1879 to 1891 were probably achieved solely to prevent the creation of rare Proof-only issues. Proof half dollars of this era were certainly popular with contemporary collectors, resulting in a higher rate of survival as compared to earlier issues of this type, especially in the finest grades. On the other hand, circulation strikes of these dates are scarce, and Mint State survivors such as this Gem 1888 are certainly rarer than Proofs. This is a significant find for the advanced specialist in Liberty Seated coinage.