What Pennies Are Worth The Most Money in 2024?

Wyatt McDonald

Apr 23rd, 2024 ·

The following are fourteen different types of pennies worth the most money in present day:

  • Fugio Copper Cent: 1787
  • Flowing Hair Cent: 1793
  • Liberty Cap Cent: 1793-1796
  • Draped Bust Cent: 1796-1807
  • Classic Head Cent: 1808-1814
  • Coronet Head Cent: 1816-1839
  • Braided Hair Cent: 1839-1857
  • Flying Eagle Cent: 1856-1858
  • Indian Head Cent: 1859-1909
  • Lincoln Wheat Cent: 1909-1958
  • Lincoln Steel Cent: 1943
  • Lincoln Memorial Cent: 1959-2008
  • Lincoln Bicentennial Cent: 2009
  • Lincoln Shield Cent: 2010-Present

With pennies being in circulation for the last 237 years, it is not hard to imagine that you might have rare pennies worth money without knowing it, either in loose change or an inherited coin collection

While all of these coins only have a face value of one cent, each different type has one or several pennies of significant value. To see the single most valuable pennies, we made a list of pennies worth money from each of the fourteen designs. However, there are many valuable pennies that are not on this list.

If you have a penny mentioned on the list below or one that you believe can be worth serious money, reach out to us at Coinfully for an appraisal and find out exactly how much your pennies are worth!

Most Valuable Cent From Each Design Type

You may already have some of the coins below among your loose change, while others might only be found at shops or if you have inherited a coin collection.

Fugio Copper Cent (1787)

A Fugio Cent in uncirculated condition was sold for $3,500 in 2022.

Only minted for one year in 1787, the Fugio copper cent is the first one cent coin minted in the United States. Believed to be designed by Benjamin Franklin, 398,577 of these cent coins were struck by a private mint. Fugio cents are recognized as the first official circulation coin of the United States.

Flowing Hair Cent (1793)

One Flowing Hair Chain Cent in mint state sold for $1.5 million in 2019.

Two types of Flowing Hair pennies were struck in 1793: chain and wreath. Both struck at the Philadelphia mint. The difference between the two coins is the tail side of the coin has a chain link while the other has a wreath.

Liberty Cap Cent (1793-1796)

In 2018 a 1794 Liberty Hair Cent from Philadelphia sold for $246,750.

In the six years that these cent coins were minted, there are over one hundred variations of the coin. Due to differences in individual dies during coinage. Most of the differences are in the size of shapes on the head and numbers in the date. Some of these differences can greatly add to the price of the coins.

Draped Bust Cent (1796-1807)

The 1807 Draped Bust Cent with a large 7 can be worth up to $470,000.

Between 1796 and 1807 most of the circulated United States coins used the draped bust design on the head side of the coin. On the large 7 Draped Bust Cent, the last number on the date will be taller than the other three.

Classic Head Cent (1808-1814)

A regular strike of the 1813 Classic Head Cent has an auction record of $211,500.

A higher quality of copper was used in the Classic Head Cent making these coins softer and easily worn. Higher grades of these coins are sought after by coin collectors. The 1813 Classic Head Cent is one of the rarest examples of the classic head cent.

Coronet Head Cent (1816-1839)

Regular strike 1839 Coronet Head Cent sold for $264,500 in 2009.

When first minted in 1816, the method and technology used to mint the Coronet Cent was the latest available. By 1839, everything that made the Coronet Head Cent new during its time was overtaken by the creation of the steam powered coin press.

Braided Hair Cent (1839-1857)

A 1842 Braided Hair Cent with a small date sold for $71,875.

This penny’s design is only slightly different from the Coronet Head by having Lady Liberty’s hair look braided. This was the final year of large cents before reducing the size and weight by half.

Flying Eagle Cent (1856-1858)

With a low mintage of 634, a 1856 Flying Eagle Cent sold for $172,500 by Heritage Auctions in 2004.

With the value of the cent dropping, people did not want to carry large cents around. Thus, the Flying Eagle Cent was minted, weighing less than half of what previous cents weighed. The Flying Eagle pennies did not strike well and were replaced after four years.

Indian Head Cent (1859-1909)

An 1869 Indian Head Penny Cent encased in a protective guarantee package, ensuring its collectible quality and value.

With one of two years of the series with a mintage below one million, an 1877 Indian Head cent sold for $149,500 in 2007.

A small number of Indian Head Cents were minted in 1909 at San Francisco. Making the Indian Head Cent the first penny with a mint mark.

Lincoln Wheat Cent (1909-1958)

A 1958 Double Die Lincoln Cent with a double printed “LIBERTY” and “IN GOD WE TRUST” sold for $1,136,250.

To honor the one hundredth anniversary of his birth, Victor David Brenner designed a penny with Lincoln’s face on it. The Lincoln Cent has become the longest running design in U.S. Mint history. Most people assume that Lincoln Wheat pennies are worth money since they are no longer minted, but most are common and only worth a little more than their face value.

Lincoln Steel Cent (1943)

One 1943 Steel Cent without a mint mark sold in 2010 for $218,500.

During World War II there was a need for copper in ammunition. As a result, for one year 1943 pennies were made of steel. Since most Lincoln pennies were made of steel, bronze pennies from this year are highly sought after by anyone who collects coins and are worth a lot of money.

Lincoln Memorial Cent (1959-2008)

A 1969 Lincoln Memorial Cent from the San Francisco mint with a double die around Lincoln’s head sold for $60,000.

To honor Lincoln’s 150th birthday the tail side of the penny was changed to feature the Lincoln memorial. Frank Gasparro, who designed the coin, had not visited the Memorial before designing the coin.

Lincoln Bicentennial Cent (2009)

The record for a Lincoln Bicentennial cent is $2,500 from the Denver mint with the presidency design on the tail side.

For Lincoln’s 200th birthday in 2009, the tail side of pennies had four different designs: birth and early childhood, formative year, professional life, and presidency. The different designs show varying pictures from Lincoln’s life.

Lincoln Shield Cent (2010-Present)

Even though these pennies are new, Lincoln Shield Cents can still be very valuable. A 2019-W penny sold for $12,500.

In 2010 the penny’s design was once again changed to honor Lincoln. The backside of pennies minted after 2009 shows a Union shield with thirteen stripes to represent a single and unified country.

What Year are Pennies Worth Money?

All years have pennies that are worth money. If you are asking about a singular year to be on the lookout for, 1943 Wheat Pennies tend to regularly have value.

Since 1943 was the only year that steel was used for pennies, it is collectable. But, if you find a penny from 1943 that was accidentally made with bronze instead of steel, your one cent penny is worth money.

What Should I Do With My Pennies Worth Money?

If you have any pennies worth money from this list or elsewhere, get your coins appraised.

It is hard to tell exactly how much your pennies are worth without an appraisal. You might own a penny that is the same year, mint, and design as one worth thousands of dollars, but you will not know for sure until an appraiser looks at it.

Appraisers can tell you precisely how much your pennies are worth. They can let you know if your pennies are in good condition (the better condition the higher the price are trained to notice small things like minting errors in coins, low mintage, or anything else that might add to the value of your coin.

For an appraisal, you can look for either in-person or online options. For an in-person appraisal, you will have to research and find a trustworthy professional, then take your coin to them. For online options, like the online appraisals with Coinfully, you will need to take pictures of your coins and send them in with descriptions.

If you want the best of both worlds, Coinfully can send an expert to your home free of charge with an at-home appraisal.

What To Do After An Appraisal

After an appraisal, you can choose to hold onto or sell your coins – the choice is yours.

Do not let anyone try and convince you to sell your collection by telling you that they are not worth much or that it would be easier than taking them home. If someone does this, then chances are they’re trying to get your valuable pennies for less than they’re worth.

If you decide to hold onto your collection, you might consider getting your coins graded so that they hold onto their value. If you decide to sell your pennies, you can look for someone to sell the coins to after an appraisal or sell your coins online or at-home after an appraisal with Coinfully.


Wyatt McDonald President & Co-Founder of Coinfully. A student of numismatics and trained in the ANA Seminar in Denver, Wyatt is the face of Coinfully and a true expert. After spending a decade buying coins over the counter at a coin shop, he knew there had to be a better way, for everyone involved.

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