Most Expensive Coins

Top 10 Valuable Lincoln Wheat Cent

Top 10 Valuable Lincoln Wheat Cent

The word penny has been around since medieval times, and the name of the U.S. penny comes from the British coin with the same name. First minted in 1787, the U.S. penny has been one of the mainstays of American coinage. The official U.S. Mint name for the coin is the “cent,” and the official U.S. 

Treasury name for it is “one-cent piece.” Although pennies have been around since the late 1700s, the penny did not take its now-familiar form until 1909, when its design began featuring President Abraham Lincoln — to celebrate the centennial of his birth, replacing the Indian head pennies in production at the time. 

The first Lincoln pennies released became known as the Lincoln wheat penny, or Lincoln wheat cent, which featured two wheat stalks framing the writing on the reverse side. This article will answer the questions about the Lincoln wheat pennies: What are the most valuable ones to coin collectors (i.e. key dates, low mintage, minting errors)?

What years of Lincoln Wheat Pennies are valuable?

The value of a coin varies according to many factors: metal content, purity, rarity, etc. As the Lincoln Wheat Cents were produced for 50 years, some mintages and variations are rarer than others and, therefore, extremely valuable to collectors. 

The most valuable Wheat Penny ever auctioned is a unique 1943-D Bronze Cent, sold for $840,000. Other examples of valuable wheat pennies include the 1909-S VDB Lincoln Wheat Penny, the 1944 Steel Penny, and other variations of the 1943 Bronze Penny. 

What Is a Wheat Penny?

Wheat pennies include those Lincoln Cents that were manufactured between 1909 and 1958. The reverse of the coin, showed wheat stalks, giving origin to the nickname, while the reverse showed the Lincoln head design that is still seen on one-cent pieces minted today.

How Much is a Wheat Penny Worth?

The following list contains the most valuable wheat pennies that were issued into circulation. Their values are based on the latest deals and market updates. They are worth a considerable amount over their copper melt value due to their numismatic interest. Not unlike key dates from silver dimes, quarters, half dollars, and dollar coins are worth much more than what is called “junk silver”.

Let’s look at the top 10 most valuable Lincoln Wheat Cents, exploring with unique characteristics and auction records.

10 Valuable Lincoln Wheat Cent

  1. 1931-S 1C, RD (Regular Strike)
  2. 1922-D 1C, BN (Regular Strike)
  3. 1921-S 1C, BN (Regular Strike)
  4. 1919-S 1C, RD (Regular Strike)
  5. 1913-S 1C, BN (Regular Strike)
  6. 1933 1C, BN (Regular Strike)
  7. 1926-S 1C, BN (Regular Strike)
  8. 1943 1C (Regular Strike)
  9. 1909 VDB 1C, BN (Regular Strike)
  10. 1915 1C, RD (Regular Strike)

1. 1931-S 1C, RD (Regular Strike)

The 1931-S 1C Lincoln Cent, RD (Regular Strike), graded MS67RD by PCGS, is a highly sought-after coin. Designed by Victor David Brenner, it features a plain edge and measures 19.00 millimeters in diameter, weighing 3.11 grams. 

Minted in San Francisco with a composition of 95% copper, 5% tin, and zinc, only 866,000 were produced. At the auction, one in MS66+RD condition sold for a record $18,600 on June 20, 2021, through Heritage Auctions.

2. 1922-D 1C, BN (Regular Strike)

The 1922-D 1C Lincoln Cent, BN (Regular Strike), graded MS65BN by PCGS, is a valuable coin. Designed by Victor David Brenner, it has a plain edge and measures 19.00 millimeters in diameter, weighing 3.11 grams. 

Minted in Denver with a composition of 95% copper, 5% tin, and zinc, there are 7,160,000 in existence. At auction, one in MS63 condition sold for a record $4,600 on January 8, 2003, through Heritage Auctions.

3. 1921-S 1C, BN (Regular Strike)

The 1921-S 1C Lincoln Cent, BN (Regular Strike), graded MS65+BN by PCGS, is a valuable coin. It was designed by Victor David Brenner and minted in San Francisco with a plain edge. 

Measuring 19.00 millimeters in diameter and weighing 3.11 grams, it has a composition of 95% copper, 5% tin, and zinc. With a mintage of 15,274,000, its auction record stands at $3,120 for an MS65BN graded coin, achieved on May 18, 2022, through Stack’s Bowers.

4. 1919-S 1C, RD (Regular Strike)

The 1919-S 1C Lincoln Cent, RD (Regular Strike), graded MS66RD by PCGS, is a valuable coin. It was designed by Victor David Brenner and minted in San Francisco with a plain edge. Measuring 19.00 millimeters in diameter and weighing 3.11 grams, it has a composition of 95% copper, 5% tin, and zinc. With a high mintage of 139,760,000, its auction record stands at $31,050 for an MS65-graded coin, achieved on August 4, 2007, through Bowers & Merena.

5. 1913-S 1C, BN (Regular Strike)

The 1913-S 1C Lincoln Cent, BN (Regular Strike), graded MS66BN by PCGS, holds value for collectors. It was designed by Victor David Brenner and minted in San Francisco with a plain edge. 

Measuring 19.00 millimeters in diameter and weighing 3.11 grams, it’s composed of 95% copper, 5% tin, and zinc. With a mintage of 6,101,000, its auction record is $3,049 for an MS66BN coin, sold on January 29, 2023, through eBay.

6. 1933 1C, BN (Regular Strike)

The 1933 1C Lincoln Cent, BN (Regular Strike), graded MS66BN by PCGS, is a collectible coin. It was designed by Victor David Brenner and minted in Philadelphia with a plain edge. 

Measuring 19.00 millimeters in diameter and weighing 3.11 grams, it’s made of 95% copper, 5% tin, and zinc. With a mintage of 14,360,000, its auction record is $336 for an MS66BN graded coin, achieved on July 27, 2022, through Stack’s Bowers.

7. 1926-S 1C, BN (Regular Strike)

The 1926-S 1C Lincoln Cent, BN (Regular Strike), graded MS65BN by PCGS, is a valuable coin. Designed by Victor David Brenner, it was minted in San Francisco with a plain edge. 

Measuring 19.00 millimeters in diameter and weighing 3.11 grams, it’s composed of 95% copper, 5% tin, and zinc. With a mintage of 4,550,000, its auction record is $21,275 for an MS65 graded coin, achieved on October 1, 2000, through Superior Galleries.

8. 1943 1C (Regular Strike)

The 1943 1C Lincoln Cent (Regular Strike), graded MS68+ by PCGS, is an exceptionally rare coin. Designed by Victor David Brenner, it was minted in Philadelphia with a plain edge. Measuring 19.00 millimeters in diameter and weighing 2.70 grams, it’s made of zinc-coated steel. With an astonishingly high mintage of 684,628,670, its auction record is $218,500 for an AU58 graded coin, achieved on January 6, 2010, through Heritage Auctions.

9. 1909 VDB 1C, BN (Regular Strike)

The 1909 VDB 1C Lincoln Cent, BN (Regular Strike), graded MS66+BN by PCGS, is a highly valued coin. Designed by Victor David Brenner, it was minted in Philadelphia with a plain edge. 

Measuring 19.00 millimeters in diameter and weighing 3.11 grams, it’s composed of 95% copper, 5% tin, and zinc. With a mintage of 27,995,000, its auction record is $4,830 for an MS62-graded coin, achieved on September 1, 2002, through Heritage Auctions.

10. 1915 1C, RD (Regular Strike)

The 1915 1C Lincoln Cent, RD (Regular Strike), graded MS67+RD by PCGS, is a highly valuable coin. Designed by Victor David Brenner, it was minted in Philadelphia with a plain edge. 

Measuring 19.00 millimeters in diameter and weighing 3.11 grams, it’s made of 95% copper, 5% tin, and zinc. With a mintage of 29,090,970, its auction record is $38,400 for an MS67+RD graded coin, achieved on May 8, 2022, through Heritage Auctions.

Also Read – Top 10 Most Valuable Lincoln Shield Cent

Conclusion:

These top 10 valuable Lincoln Wheat Cents showcase the enduring allure of coin collecting. From the scarce 1931-S 1C to the remarkable rarity of the 1943 steel cent, each coin tells a story of history, craftsmanship, and the pursuit of numismatic treasures. 

Whether you’re a seasoned collector or a newcomer to the hobby, these coins serve as shining examples of the beauty and fascination found in the world of numismatics.

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