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Wheat Penny History

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The Wheat Penny or Lincoln Wheat Penny was originally released on August 2, 1909. People were intrigued about their new cent coin because the mint did not release any pictures of the Lincoln Cent before the release of the actual coin. The mint sent out what was believed to be a sufficient amount of Lincoln Wheat Pennies, but the morning of August 2 proved their predictions to be astoundingly wrong. With long lines outside of each treasury to buy the new Lincoln cent the U.S. Mint was overwhelmed!

The Lincoln Cent's obverse design consisted of a profile of President Lincoln, the side profile was inspired by a photo taken on February 9, 1864. On the reverse of the coin a wheat stock was featured on each side and the words “ ONE CENT” were in-scripted. The wheat stock featured on the coin is the reason why the Lincoln Cent coin got its other name, the Wheat Penny. The designer of the Lincoln Wheat Penny was Victor D. Berner.

The Wheat penny was minted from 1909-1958 in Philadelphia, Denver, and San Francisco. Some of these Lincoln cents were also minted in 1909 with the initials “VDB” for the designer of the coin. If someone were to have this rare version of the Lincoln cent these initials will be found on the bottom of the reverse of the coin. 

Many collectors throughout the United States collect Lincoln Cents. The main reason for this is affordability. Complete sets of the Lincoln Pennies can often be put together for only a couple hundred dollars in circulated quality. Some collectors look to spend a little more money and put together a certified Lincoln Penny set graded either by NGC or PCGS. The key dates in the Lincoln Penny series are the following:

-1909 S VDB Wheat Penny

-1909 S Wheat Penny

-1914-D Wheat Penny

-1922 D No D Wheat Penny

-1924 D Wheat Penny

-1931 S Wheat Penny

Wheat Penny Mintages and Values

Date Mintage Good Very Fine Extremely Fine Uncirculated
1909 Wheat Penny (VDB) 27,995,000 $15.00 $18.00 $19.00 $25.00
1909-S Wheat Penny  (VDB) 484,000 $600.00 $725.00 $850.00 $1,200.00
1909 Wheat Penny  72,702,618 $4.00 $7.00 $8.00 $17.00
1909-S Wheat Penny  1,825,000 $80.00 $130.00 $150.00 $300.00
1910 Wheat Penny  146,801,218 $0.35 $1.50 $4.00 $18.00
1910-S Wheat Penny  6,045,000 $17.00 $25.00 $45.00 $100.00
1911 Wheat Penny  101,177,787 $0.45 $2.50 $6.00 $21.00
1911-D Wheat Penny  12,672,000 $6.00 $20.00 $50.00 $95.00
1911-S Wheat Penny  4,026,000 $35.00 $60.00 $75.00 $185.00
1912 Wheat Penny  68,153,060 $1.25 $5.50 $1.00 $35.00
1912-D Wheat Penny  10,411,000 $7.00 $25.00 $65.00 $170.00
1912-S Wheat Penny  4,431,000 $20.00 $40.00 $75.00 $180.00
1913 Wheat Penny  76,532,352 $0.85 $4.00 $18.00 $35.00
1913-D Wheat Penny  15,804,000 $3.00 $10.00 $50.00 $110.00
1913-S Wheat Penny  6,101,000 $10.00 $30.00 $60.00 $175.00
1914 Wheat Penny  75,238,432 $0.75 $6.00 $20.00 $55.00
1914-D Wheat Penny  1,193,000 $150.00 $250.00 $700.00 $2,000.00
1914-S Wheat Penny  4,137,000 $20.00 $40.00 $85.00 $325.00
1915 Wheat Penny  29,092,120 $1.75 $18.00 $60.00 $90.00
1915-D Wheat Penny  22,050,000 $2.00 $7.00 $22.00 $85.00
1915-S Wheat Penny  4,833,000 $20.00 $35.00 $70.00 $200.00
1916 Wheat Penny  131,833,677 $0.30 $2.00 $8.00 $18.00
1916-D Wheat Penny  35,956,000 $1.00 $6.00 $15.00 $75.00
1916-S Wheat Penny  22,510,000 $1.75 $8.00 $25.00 $105.00
1917 Wheat Penny  196,429,785 $0.30 $2.00 $4.00 $16.00
1917-D Wheat Penny  55,120,000 $0.80 $4.50 $35.00 $80.00
1917-S Wheat Penny  32,620,000 $0.50 $2.50 $10.00 $75.00
1918 Wheat Penny  288,104,634 $0.20 $1.50 $3.00 $16.00
1918-D Wheat Penny  47,830,000 $0.75 $4.00 $12.00 $80.00
1918-S Wheat Penny  34,680,000 $0.50 $3.00 $11.00 $80.00
1919 Wheat Penny  392,021,000 $0.20 $1.00 $3.25 $14.00
1919-D Wheat Penny  57,154,000 $0.50 $4.00 $10.00 $65.00
1919-S Wheat Penny  139,760,000 $0.20 $2.00 $6.00 $50.00
1920 Wheat Penny  310,165,000 $0.20 $0.50 $2.25 $15.00
1920-D Wheat Penny  49,280,000 $1.00 $0.50 $19.00 $80.00
1920-S Wheat Penny  46,220,000 $0.50 $2.25 $10.00 $110.00
1921 Wheat Penny  39,157,000 $0.50 $2.10 $9.00 $50.00
1921-S Wheat Penny  15,274,000 $1.50 $7.00 $35.00 $135.00
1922-D Wheat Penny  7,160,000 $20.00 $27.00 $40.00 $110.00
1923 Wheat Penny  74,723,000 $0.35 $1.00 $5.00 $15.00
1923-S Wheat Penny  8,700,000 $5.00 $12.00 $40.00 $220.00
1924 Wheat Penny  75,178,000 $0.20 $0.85 $5.00 $24.00
1924-D Wheat Penny  2,520,000 $40.00 $60.00 $125.00 $300.00
1924-S Wheat Penny  11,696,000 $2.00 $5.50 $20.00 $125.00
1925 Wheat Penny  139,949,000 $0.20 $0.60 $3.00 $10.00
1925-D Wheat Penny  22,580,000 $1.00 $0.60 $13.00 $75.00
1925-S Wheat Penny  26,380,000 $1.00 $5.00 $12.00 $90.00
1926 Wheat Penny  157,088,000 $0.20 $4.00 $2.00 $8.00
1926-D Wheat Penny  28,020,000 $1.35 $0.50 $14.00 $85.00
1926-S Wheat Penny  4,550,000 $9.00 $5.25 $35.00 $155.00
1927 Wheat Penny  144,440,000 $0.20 $17.00 $2.00 $10.00
1927-D Wheat Penny  27,170,000 $1.25 $0.60 $7.50 $62.00
1927-S Wheat Penny  14,276,000 $1.50 $3.75 $15.00 $85.00
1928 Wheat Penny  134,116,000 $0.20 $5.00 $2.00 $9.00
1928-D Wheat Penny  31,170,000 $0.75 $0.60 $5.50 $37.00
1928-S Wheat Penny  17,266,000 $1.00 $3.00 $9.50 $75.00
1929 Wheat Penny  185,262,000 $0.20 $3.75 $2.00 $8.00
1929-D Wheat Penny  41,730,000 $0.40 $0.75 $5.50 $25.00
1929-S Wheat Penny  50,148,000 $0.50 $2.25 $5.80 $21.00
1930 Wheat Penny  157,415,000 $0.12 $0.50 $1.25 $6.00
1930-D Wheat Penny  40,100,000 $0.20 $0.55 $2.50 $12.00
1930-S Wheat Penny  24,286,000 $0.20 $0.60 $1.75 $10.00
1931 Wheat Penny  19,396,000 $0.50 $1.50 $4.00 $20.00
1931-D Wheat Penny  4,480,000 $5.00 $8.50 $13.50 $60.00
1931-S Wheat Penny  866,000 $60.00 $100.00 $125.00 $175.00
1932 Wheat Penny  9,062,000 $1.50 $2.50 $4.50 $20.00
1932-D Wheat Penny  10,500,000 $1.50 $2.75 $4.50 $19.00
1933 Wheat Penny  14,360,000 $1.50 $3.00 $6.25 $20.00
1933-D Wheat Penny  6,200,000 $3.50 $7.25 $12.00 $23.00
1934 Wheat Penny  219,080,000 $0.12 $0.30 $1.00 $7.00
1934-D Wheat Penny  28,446,000 $0.20 $0.75 $2.25 $20.00
1935 Wheat Penny  245,388,000 $0.15 $0.25 $0.50 $3.00
1935-D Wheat Penny  47,000,000 $0.15 $0.25 $0.50 $5.00
1935-S Wheat Penny  38,702,000 $0.15 $0.50 $2.00 $12.00
1936 Wheat Penny  309,632,000 $0.15 $0.50 $1.50 $3.00
1936-D Wheat Penny  40,620,000 $0.15 $0.50 $1.00 $3.00
1936-S Wheat Penny  29,130,000 $0.15 $0.55 $1.00 $5.00
1937 Wheat Penny  309,170,000 $0.15 $0.50 $1.00 $3.00
1937-D Wheat Penny  50,430,000 $0.15 $0.40 $1.00 $5.00
1937-S Wheat Penny  34,500,000 $0.15 $0.40 $1.00 $5.00
1938 Wheat Penny  156,682,000 $0.15 $0.40 $1.00 $4.00
1938-D Wheat Penny  20,010,000 $0.20 $0.80 $1.25 $4.00
1938-S Wheat Penny  15,180,000 $0.40 $0.75 $1.10 $4.00
1939 Wheat Penny  316,466,000 $0.15 $0.25 $0.50 $2.00
1939-D Wheat Penny  15,160,000 $0.50 $0.85 $1.25 $4.00
1939-S Wheat Penny  52,070,000 $0.15 $0.75 $1.00 $3.00
1940 Wheat Penny  586,810,000 $0.15 $0.40 $0.60 $2.00
1940-D Wheat Penny  81,390,000 $0.15 $0.60 $0.75 $3.00
1940-S Wheat Penny  112,940,000 $0.15 $0.50 $1.00 $3.00
1941 Wheat Penny  887,018,000 $0.15 $0.30 $0.60 $2.00
1941-D Wheat Penny  128,700,000 $0.15 $0.50 $1.00 $4.00
1941-S Wheat Penny  92,360,000 $0.15 $0.50 $1.00 $4.00
1942 Wheat Penny  657,796,000 $0.15 $0.25 $0.50 $1.00
1942-D Wheat Penny  206,698,000 $0.15 $0.25 $0.50 $1.00
1942-S Wheat Penny  85,590,000 $0.20 $0.85 $1.25 $7.00
1944 Wheat Penny  1,435,400,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1944-D Wheat Penny  430,578,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1944-S Wheat Penny  282,760,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1945 Wheat Penny  1,040,515,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1945-D Wheat Penny  266,268,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1945-S Wheat Penny  121,770,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1946 Wheat Penny  991,655,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1946-D Wheat Penny  315,690,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1946-S Wheat Penny  198,100,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1947 Wheat Penny  190,555,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1947-D Wheat Penny  194,750,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1947-S Wheat Penny  99,000,000 N/A $0.25 $0.25 N/A
1948 Wheat Penny  317,570,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1948-D Wheat Penny  172,637,500 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1948-S Wheat Penny  81,735,000 N/A $0.30 $0.30 N/A
1949 Wheat Penny  217,775,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1949-D Wheat Penny  153,132,500 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1949-S Wheat Penny  64,290,000 N/A $0.30 $0.30 N/A
1950 Wheat Penny  272,635,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1950-D Wheat Penny  334,950,000 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1950-S Wheat Penny  118,505,000 N/A $0.25 $0.25 N/A
1951 Wheat Penny  284,576,000 N/A $0.25 $0.25 N/A
1951-D Wheat Penny  625,355,000 N/A $0.12 $0.12 N/A
1951-S Wheat Penny  136,010,000 N/A $0.30 $0.30 N/A
1952 Wheat Penny 186,775,000 N/A $0.15 $0.15 N/A
1952-D Wheat Penny  746,130,000 N/A $0.15 $0.15 N/A
1952-S Wheat Penny  137,800,004 N/A $0.20 $0.20 N/A
1953 Wheat Penny  256,755,000 N/A $0.15 $0.15 N/A
1953-D Wheat Penny  700,515,000 N/A $0.15 $0.15 N/A
1953-S Wheat Penny  181,835,000 N/A $0.15 $0.15 N/A
1954 Wheat Penny  71,640,050 N/A $0.35 $0.35 N/A
1954-D Wheat Penny  251,552,500 N/A $0.12 $0.12 N/A
1954-S Wheat Penny  96,190,000 N/A $0.12 $0.12 N/A
1955 Wheat Penny  330,958,200 N/A $0.10 $0.12 N/A
1955-D Wheat Penny  263,257,500 N/A $0.10 $0.12 N/A
1955-S Wheat Penny  44,610,000 N/A $0.20 $0.12 N/A
1956 Wheat Penny  420,745,000 N/A $0.10 $0.12 N/A
1956-D Wheat Penny  1,098,201,100 N/A $0.10 $0.12 N/A
1957 Wheat Penny  282,540,000 N/A $0.10 $0.12 N/A
1957-D Wheat Penny  1,051,342,000 N/A $0.10 $0.12 N/A
1958 Wheat Penny  252,525,000 N/A $0.10 $0.12 N/A
1958-D Wheat Penny  800,953,300 N/A $0.10 $0.12 N/A

*Source 2020 Red Book