One Cent, Lincoln, Coin Type from United States - detailed information

One Cent, Lincoln, Coin Type from United States (issued 1909 - )
Coin TypeOne Cent, Lincoln

The United States one-cent coin (often called a penny, from the British coin of the same name) is a unit of currency equalling one-hundredth of a United States dollar. The cent's symbol is ¢. It has been the lowest-value physical unit of U.S. currency since the abolition of the half-cent in 1857.

The earliest one cent coins were large and made of copper. Their designs changed relatively often; there were three different types in 1793 alone, the Flowing Hair / Chain Cent, the Flowing Hair / Wreath Cent and the Liberty Cap Cent - the latter issued until 1796, after which came the Draped Bust type (1796 to 1807), the so-called Classic Head Cent (1808 to 1814) and the Coronet Cent, also known as Liberty Head (1816 to 1857).

When a large copper coin became impractical, an alternative was sought. The Flying Eagle cent was a transitional smaller type, struck between 1856 and 1858 in copper-nickel. This design was short-lived and was replaced by the the Indian Head type in 1859 - initially also in copper-nickel until 1864, then bronze.

In 1909, the Lincoln Cent (also known as a Lincoln Penny) was introduced to mark the centenary of the birth of Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States. This was the first time when an actual person (and not an abstract symbol such as Liberty) was depicted on American coins. The obverse of the coin shows a portrait of Abraham Lincoln by Victor David Brenner. The original reverse, also by Brenner, showed the value surrounded by wheat stalks and is known as the "Wheat Penny"; this was issued for 50 years until it was replaced by the depiction of the Lincoln Memorial in 1959, to mark the 150th anniversary of the birth of Abraham Lincoln. In 2009, four different reverses were issued to mark the various stages of his life (known as Lincoln Bicentennial cents, commemorating 200 years since his birth). After that, the reverse changed again and now depicts the Union Shield of the United States.

The designer's initials VDB appeared on the reverse for a short while in 1909 but were deemed too prominent and were almost immediately removed; in 1918, they were restored to the obverse of the coin where they still are - on the truncation of Lincoln's shoulder.

The material of the coin also changed. Originally struck in 95% copper, the cent coin was changed for one year to zinc-coated steel in 1943 as copper was needed to aid in the war effort. The mint then reverted to 95% copper until 1982, when inflation made copper too expensive and the composition was changed to zinc with an outer copper layer.

Obverse
United States / One Cent, Lincoln - obverse photo

The obverse of the coin, surrounded by a plain rim, shows the bust of Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States, facing right. In tiny incuse letters on the shoulder truncation, the designer's initials VDB (for Victor David Brenner).

Around above, the inscription IN GOD WE TRUST.

To the left of the bust, LIBERTY. To the right of the bust and slightly lower, the date of issue: [year].

Below the date, the mint mark (if any; coins struck by the Philadelphia Mint have no mint mark).

Obverse Inscription IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY [year]
Reverse
United States / One Cent, Lincoln - reverse photo

The reverse of the coin is surrounded by a plain rim. There have been three major reverse design during the existence of the Lincoln Cent (and four one-year types issued in 2009 only):

The first design (1909 - 1958) by Victor David Brenner, known as the Wheat Cent or the Wheat Penny, displays the value and denomination ONE CENT on two lines at the centre, below which on two lines the legend UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. On the left and on the right, two ears of wheat. Above, the motto E · PLURIBUS · UNUM.

The second design (1959 - 2008) by Frank Gasparro, known as the Lincoln Memorial Cent, features the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. The legend UNITED STATES OF AMERICA is around above; below it, on two lines E · PLURIBUS · UNUM ·. The value and denomination ONE CENT are around below. The designer's initials FG are to the right of the steps leading to the Memorial.

The third design (2010 - present) by Lyndall Bass, known as the Shield Cent, features the Union Shield of the United States. It has 13 vertical stripes representing the 13 original states forming the United States; the motto E PLURIBUS UNUM is incuse in its upper part. The legend UNITED STATES OF AMERICA is around above and the value and denomination ONE CENT are in relief on a ribbon running across the shield. The artist's initials LB are in the field to the left of the shield and below the ribbon, while the engraver's initials JFM (for Joseph Menna) are on the right.

Reverse Inscription ONE CENT UNITED STATES OF AMERICA E PLURIBUS UNUM
EdgePlainEdge InscriptionNone
Coin Type: One Cent, Lincoln - (116) Coins (Page 2 of 2)
Coin NameMintagePortraitLegend
One Cent 2009 Lincoln Bicentennial - Birth and Childhood 639,364,843 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2009
One Cent 2009 Lincoln Bicentennial - Formative Years 744,164,843 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2009
One Cent 2009 Lincoln Bicentennial - Professional Life 656,564,843 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2009
One Cent 2009 Lincoln Bicentennial - Presidency 332,164,843 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2009
One Cent 2010 Union Shield 4,013,687,010 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2010
One Cent 2011 Union Shield 4,940,213,010 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2011
One Cent 2012 Union Shield 6,016,439,148 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2012
One Cent 2013 Union Shield 7,071,274,505 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2013
One Cent 2014 Union Shield 8,147,590,369 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2014
One Cent 2015 Union Shield 9,366,399,412 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2015
One Cent 2016 Union Shield 9,119,377,355 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2016
One Cent 2017 Union Shield 8,635,224,477 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2017
One Cent 2018 Union Shield 7,804,298,163 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2018
One Cent 2019 Union Shield 7,042,653,642 Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2019
One Cent 2020 Union Shield unknown Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2020
One Cent 2021 Union Shield unknown Abraham Lincoln IN GOD WE TRUST LIBERTY 2021
Showing 101 to 116 of 116 Coins.
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One Cent, Lincoln: Details
CountryUnited States
CurrencyUS Dollar
Sub-type ofOne Cent
From1909
Face Value1 (x Cent)
CurrentYes
MaterialBronze
DesignerVictor David Brenner, Frank Gasparro, Lyndall Bass
TechnologyMilled (machine-made)
ShapeRound
OrientationCoin Alignment (Axis 6)
Size19.000 mm
Mass3.110 g