A Dave's Collectible Coins Article

Wheat Pennies

Wheat Pennies

Wheat pennies are a favorite amongst coin collectors and enthusiasts everywhere. The wheat penny has been around since 1909, and it was produced until 1958. The wheat pennies are not only fun to collect and are enjoyed by many, but they are quite collectible and they tend to hold their value.

Wheat pennies were in production for almost fifty years, but they are not common today in current circulation. They are however quite available to collectors, and they tend to be pretty affordable too. The coin stands out in the memories of many as being an icon of American childhood, so it can be enjoyed by all collectors, young and old collectors, new hobbyists, and veteran collectors too.

Around the time that the wheat penny was coming to a close, not only did the obverse of the coin change, but the face of the coin almost changed too. In the year 1952, the Mint considered replacing the traditional Lincoln cent with a new design for the coin. However, U.S. Mint officials were concerned that the incoming Eisenhower administration would be hostile to replacing a Republican on the cent with someone else. So, Lincoln stayed and has been on the face of the coin ever since.

Right before the wheat penny was discontinued, something interesting happened. Several thousand 1955 wheat pennies were actually struck with a doubled die. A doubled die means a die that strikes the same coin twice but in such a way that the coin shifts slightly between strikes, causing a slightly, “doubled” look. In truth, the Mint was aware of the pieces, and the Mint knew they were somewhere within a very large production lot (die doubling is usually a pretty uncommon occurrence) but the Mint opted to release them anyways, rather than destroy the entire lot of them and have to start all over.

These coins are worth a look. They are simple in nature, but they are iconic in our memories and our hearts both. In fact, few coins capture our attention like the good old fashioned wheat penny. The coin stands out and grabs us and our attention probably because there are so many different wheat pennies that are valuable both sentimentally and monetarily. Both the penny itself and its value increases our interest in these coins.

Their History

Except for a few changes here and there, the wheat penny was and is a copper coin. The cent was actually only changed for one year to a steel composition in 1943 as copper was needed to aid in the war effort for World War II. Shortly after though the Mint jumped back to copper and the wheat penny continued on to be a copper coin until its discontinuance in 1958.

The wheat penny is a fun coin that can be enjoyed by any coin enthusiasts. It is interesting, quirky, old fashioned, and there are a lot of different unique types of wheat cents that have high values and fetch prices and appeals in both their look and their value. The wheat really does represent the true heart of what is coin collecting, which is living in the, “hunt for that perfect coin” and the search for that beauty and the rejoice at finally finding it.

The wheat penny saw us through a whole lot. Two World Wars, the Roaring Twenties, a Great Depression, and the first half of the 1950s. The coin itself is a piece of American history. A lot of people specialize in this coin and tend to only search for this one in particular. All in all, collectors of all interests tend to recommend buying it, as the wheat penny is a staple of coin collecting and a great foundation for any collection.


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