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Wheat Penny Key Dates

This list includes the specific rare Wheat penny key dates which will have the potential of have a greater value than other Wheat or copper pennies.

The Lincoln Wheat pennies were produced from 1909 thru 1958 and were made of a variety of metals over the years including copper, bronze and steel. To help identify them, look for one of these three marks:

  • D - Denver Mint
  • S - San Francisco Mint
  • No Mint Mark - Philadelphia

The 1909-S Wheat pennies include a rarer, alternative mark on some which is the VDB designation. There were far less of these minted. The 1909-S VDB designation on the lower back side of these Lincoln copper cents stands for Victor David Brenner who was a noted sculptor of his time. Mr. Brenner is known for having designed the Lincoln penny which is actually based upon a portrait plaque he created honoring the 16th President of the United States.

  • 1909-S
  • 1914-D
  • 1922 with no mint mark
  • 1931-S (minimal mintage)
  • 1943 made of bronze and copper
  • 1944 made of steel (rare)
  • 1955 with the double die errors

In 1959 the Lincoln Memorial design replaced the Wheat penny and these are typically not sought after by coin collectors. However, the copper pennies produced prior to 1983 are the copper content cents which are of great interest to penny hoarders due to the fact that they contain copper. These copper pennies have reached values of several times their face value in recent years so they hold an excellent bullion value which many people who are not collectors find to be worthy potential investment options.