VarietyPlus » Lincoln Cents (1909 to date)

Lincoln Cents (1909 to date)

The centennial of Abraham Lincoln’s birth was marked by placing his portrait on the cent. For the reverse, sculptor Victor D. Brenner chose a heraldic arrangement of two wheat heads to frame the statutory legends. While the first model featured his name spelled in full, the cent as issued displayed just the three letters “V.D.B.” Even this was provocative to the press and public, and the letters were quickly removed, only to be relocated to a less conspicuous position in 1918.

This long series has undergone several compositional changes: The 1% tin of its original bronze alloy was removed in 1942, 1944-46 and 1962-82. The cents of 1943 were coined on steel planchets plated with zinc, a disastrous failure. From mid-1982 to date all cents have been of brass-plated zinc.

On its golden anniversary, the Lincoln Cent received a new reverse featuring the Lincoln Memorial building. This was prepared by Frank Gasparro, and it was continued through 2008. For the Lincoln bicentennial in 2009 the U. S. Mint issued four commemorative reverses depicting different stages in the great man’s life. Starting 2010, the reverse design has been a Union shield adapted from pattern cents and nickels coined in 1896.

Certainly among the most widely collected series in American numismatics, the Lincoln Cent has been the entry point for several generations of hobbyists. There are a few key dates, 1909-S with and without initials, 1914-D and 1931-S, which are considered rare, especially given the broad interest in the series.

Variety collecting is likewise extremely popular with this coin type, and it is practiced both in conjunction with and exclusive of date/mint collecting. There are literally too many minor varieties for any one book to catalog, but the most desirable are included within VarietyPlus. The big varieties include prominent doubled-die obverses for 1917, 1936, 1955, 1958, 1972 and 1984, as well as many lesser ones. Also popular are repunched mintmarks, of which this series has many.

NGC will attribute the Lincoln Cent varieties listed below. Those included within The Cherrypickers’ Guide to Rare Die Varieties are labeled with Fivaz/Stanton (FS) numbers, while additional varieties employ NGC’s VarietyPlus (VP) numbers. A further selection of varieties may be found within the books listed under References and will be of interest to the specialist.

Denom.MS/PFDateFee*NGC LabelVarietyPlusCONECAFivaz-Stanton (NEW)Fivaz-Stanton (OLD)Wexler
1CMS1909 VDB -      
1CMS1909 VDB DDO$15FS-1101VP-001DDO-001 FS-012 
1CMS1909 S VDB -      
1CMS1909 LINCOLN-      
1CMS1909 S LINCOLN-      
1CMS1909 S/S LINCOLN$15FS-1501VP-002RPM-001 FS-012.2 
1CMS1909 S/HOR S LINCOLN$15 VP-001RPM-002FS-1502FS-012.3 
1CMS1910 S/S$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001   
1CMS1910 S/S$15FS-502VP-002RPM-002 FS-012.7 
1CMS1911 D/D$15FS-501 RPM-001 FS-012.8 
1CMS1911 D/D$15FS-502 RPM-002 FS-012.81 
1CMS1911 D/D$15FS-503 RPM-003 FS-012.82 
1CMS1911 D/D/D$15FS-504VP-001RPM-004 FS-012.83 
1CMS1911 S/S$15FS-501   FS-012.85 
1CMS1917 DOUBLED DIE OBV$15 VP-001DDO-001FS-101FS-013 
1CMS1922 D WEAK D-      
1CMS1924 S/S$15VP-001 RPM-001   
1CMS1925 S/S$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001 FS-013.31 
1CMS1925 S/S$15VP-002 RPM-003   
1CMS1927 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-013.5 
1CMS1927 D/D$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001 FS-013.51 
1CMS1928 S SMALL S$15      
1CMS1928 S LARGE S$15   FS-501FS-013.6 
1CMS1929 S/S$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001 FS-013.65 
1CMS1930 D/D$15FS-502 RPM-002 FS-013.7 
1CMS1930 S/S$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001 FS-013.73 
1CMS1934 DDO$15FS-101     
1CMS1934 D/D/D/D$15FS-503VP-002RPM-003 FS-013.81 
1CMS1934 D/D$15FS-504VP-001RPM-004 FS-013.8 
1CMS1935 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-013.9 
1CMS1936 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-014 
1CMS1936 DDO$15FS-102VP-002DDO-002 FS-015 
1CMS1936 DDO$15FS-103VP-003DDO-003 FS-016 
1CMS1937 D/D$15VP-001 RPM-001   
1CMS1938 D/D$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001 FS-016.4 
1CMS1938 S/S$15FS-501VP-002RPM-001 FS-016.51 
1CMS1938 S/S/S$15FS-502VP-001RPM-002 FS-016.5 
1CMS1939 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-017 
1CMS1940 D/D$15VP-001 RPM-002   
1CMS1940 S/S$15VP-001 RPM-007   
1CMS1941 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-018 
1CMS1941 DDO$15FS-102VP-002DDO-002 FS-018.1 
1CMS1941 DDO$15FS-103VP-003DDO-005 FS-018.3 
1CMS1941 S SMALL S$15      
1CMS1941 S LARGE S$15      
1CMS1941 S/S LARGE S$15VP-001 RPM-007   
1CMS1942 DDO$15FS-101 DDO-002   
1CMS1942 DDO$15FS-102VP-001DDO-004 FS-018.7 
1CMS1942 DDO$15FS-103VP-002DDO-006 FS-018.9 
1CMS1942 DDO$15FS-104 DDO-008   
1CMS1942 D/D$15FS-502VP-001RPM-002 FS-018.91 
1CMS1942 D/D$15FS-504VP-002RPM-004 FS-018.92 
1CMS1942 S/S DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001, RPM-001 FS-018.94 
1CMS1942 S/S/S$15FS-512 RPM-012 FS-018.93 
1CMS1942 S/S$15VP-002 RPM-011   
1CMS1942 S/S$15VP-003 RPM-004   
1CMS1943 DDO$15FS-101 DDO-001 FS-018.97 
1CMS1943 BRONZE-      
1CMS1943 D/D$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001 FS-019 
1CMS1943 D/D$15FS-513 RPM-013 FS-019.1 
1CMS1943 D/D$15VP-002 RPM-007   
1CMS1943 D/D$15VP-003 RPM-004   
1CMS1943 D BRONZE-      
1CMS1943 S DDO$15FS-101 DDO-001 FS-019.5 
1CMS1943 S BRONZE-      
1CMS1944 STEEL-      
1CMS1944 D/D$15FS-502VP-003RPM-002 FS-021.1 
1CMS1944 D/D$15FS-507VP-004RPM-007 FS-021.11 
1CMS1944 D/D$15VP-005 RPM-010   
1CMS1944 D/S$15FS-511VP-001OMM-001  FS-020 
1CMS1944 D/S$15FS-512VP-002OMM-002 FS-021 
1CMS1944 D STEEL-      
1CMS1944 S STEEL-      
1CMS1945 DDO$15FS-101 DDO-013   
1CMS1945 S/S$15VP-001 RPM-005   
1CMS1946 D/D$15VP-001 RPM-004   
1CMS1946 S INVERTED S$15FS-501 IMM-001   
1CMS1946 S/D$15FS-511 OMM-001 FS-021.2 
1CMS1946 S/S$15VP-001 RPM-006   
1CMS1947 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-021.3 
1CMS1947 S/S$15FS-504 RPM-004   
1CMS1949 D/D/D$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001 FS-021.33 
1CMS1949 S/S$15VP-001 RPM-001   
1CMS1950 S/S$15FS-504VP-001RPM-004 FS-021.34 
1CMS1951 D DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-021.4 
1CMS1951 D/D$15VP-002 RPM-002   
1CMS1951 D/D$15VP-003 RPM-004   
1CMS1951 D/S$15FS-511 OMM-001 FS-021.5 
1CMS1951 D/S$15FS-512 OMM-002 FS-021.52 
1CMS1952 D/S$15FS-511 OMM-1   
1CMS1952 D/D$15VP-001 RPM-020   
1CMS1953 D/D$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001 FS-021.73 
1CMS1953 D/D$15FS-502 RPD-028   
1CMS1953 S/S$15VP-001 RPM-002   
1CMS1953 S/S$15VP-002 RPM-004   
1CMS1954 D/D/D$15FS-501 EDSVP-001RPM-001 FS-021.76 
1CMS1954 D/D$15FS-501 LDS     
1CMS1954 S/S$15VP-001 RPM-002   
1CMS1955 DOUBLED DIE OBV-  DDO-001FS-101FS-021.8 
1CMS1955 DDO$15FS-102VP-002DDO-002 FS-021.9 
1CMS1955 D DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-021.93 
1CMS1955 D/D$15FS-503VP-002RPM-003 FS-021.94 
1CMS1955 D/D$15VP-003 RPM-002   
1CMS1955 D/D$15VP-004 RPM-004   
1CMS1955 S/S/S$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001 FS-021.97 
1CMS1956 D/D$15FS-501VP-002RPM-001 FS-022.1 
1CMS1956 D/D$15FS-502 RPM-016   
1CMS1956 D/D$15FS-508VP-001RPM-008  FS-022 
1CMS1956 D/D$15VP-003 RPM-003   
1CMS1956 D/D$15VP-004 RPM-012   
1CMS1957 D/D/D$15VP-001 RPM-002   
1CMS1957 D/D$15VP-002 RPM-005   
1CMS1957 D/D$15VP-003 RPM-006   
1CMS1958 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-022.15 
1CMS1958 D/D/D$15VP-001 RPM-001   
1CMS1959 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-022.2 
1CMS1959 DDO$15FS-104VP-002DDO-004 FS-022.3 
1CMS1959 D/D/D$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001 FS-022.5 
1CMS1960 SMALL DATE-      
1CMS1960 LARGE DATE-      
1CMS1960 D SMALL DATE-      
1CMS1960 D LARGE DATE-      
1CMS1960 D/D SM/LG DATE$15FS-101/501VP-001DDO-001, RPM-100 FS-025.5 
1CMS1960 D/D LARGE DATE$15FS-502 RPM-001   
1CMS1960 D/D LARGE DATE$15VP-003 RPM-023   
1CMS1960 D/D LARGE DATE$15VP-004 RPM-013   
1CMS1960 D/D LARGE DATE$15VP-005 RPM-054   
1CMS1960 D/D LARGE DATE$15VP-006 RPM-019   
1CMS1960 D/D LARGE DATE$15VP-007 RPM-007   
1CMS1960 D/D LARGE DATE$15VP-008 RPM-049   
1CMS1960 D/D LARGE DATE$15VP-009 RPM-005   
1CMS1960 D/D LARGE DATE$15VP-010 RPM-016   
1CMS1961 D/HORIZ D$15FS-501VP-001RPM-001   
1CMS1963 D DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-025.8 
1CMS1964 DDR$15FS-801VP-001DDR-001 FS-026 
1CMS1964 DDR$15FS-802VP-002DDR-020 FS-027 
1CMS1966 DDR$15FS-801 DDR-001   
1CMS1968 D/D$15FS-501VP-002RPM-001 FS-027.3 
1CMS1968 D DDR$15FS-801VP-001DDR-001 FS-027.4 
1CMS1969 S$15DOUBLED DIE OBVVP-001DDO-001FS-101FS-028 
1CMS1970 S SMALL DATE-      
1CMS1970 S LARGE DATE-      
1CMS1970 S DDO LARGE DATE$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-029 
1CMS1970 S/S LARGE DATE$15VP-002 RPM-1   
1CMS1971 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-031 
1CMS1971 DDO$15VP-002 DDO-002   
1CMS1971 DDO$15VP-003 DDO-003   
1CMS1972 DOUBLED DIE OBV- VP-001DDO-001FS-101FS-033.3 
1CMS1972 DDO$15FS-102VP-002DDO-002 FS-033.52 
1CMS1972 DDO$15FS-103VP-003DDO-003 FS-033.53 
1CMS1972 DDO$15FS-104VP-004DDO-004 FS-033.54 
1CMS1972 DDO$15FS-105VP-005DDO-005 FS-033.55 
1CMS1972 DDO$15FS-106VP-006DDO-006 FS-033.56 
1CMS1972 DDO$15FS-107VP-007DDO-007 FS-033.57 
1CMS1972 DDO$15FS-108VP-008DDO-008 FS-033.58 
1CMS1972 DDO$15FS-109 DDO-009 FS-033.59 
1CMS1972 D DDO$15VP-001 DDO-001   
1CMS1980 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-034 
1CMS1982 LG DT BRONZE-      
1CMS1982 LG DT BRONZE DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-002 FS-034.5 
1CMS1982 SM DT BRONZE-      
1CMS1982 D LG DT BRONZE-      
1CMS1982 LG DT ZINC-      
1CMS1982 SM DT ZINC-      
1CMS1982 SM DT ZINC DDR$15FS-1801VP-002DDR-002 FS-035 
1CMS1982 D LG DT ZINC-      
1CMS1982 D SM DT ZINC-      
1CMS1983 DDO$15FS-101VP-002DDO-001 FS-035 
1CMS1983 DDO$15FS-102VP-003DDO-002 FS-035.1 
1CMS1983 DDO$15FS-103VP-004DDO-003 FS-035.2 
1CMS1983 DOUBLED DIE REV- VP-001DDR-001FS-801FS-036 
1CMS1983 DDR$15FS-802 DDR-002   
1CMS1984 DOUBLED DIE OBV- VP-001DDO-001FS-101FS-037 
1CMS1984 DDO$15FS-102VP-002DDO-002 FS-038 
1CMS1984 D DDO$15FS-101 DDO-001 FS-039 
1CMS1987 D/D$15FS-501 RPM-003   
1CMS1988 DDO$15FS-101 DDO-003   
1CMS1988 WIDE "AM"$15  RDV-006   
1CMS1988 D WIDE "AM"$15  RDV-006   
1CMS1992 CLOSE "AM"$15      
1CMS1992 D CLOSE "AM"$15   FS-901  
1CMS1994 DDR$15FS-801VP-001DDR-001 FS-039.9 
1CMS1995 DOUBLED DIE OBV- VP-001DDO-001FS-101FS-040 
1CMS1995 D DDO$15FS-103VP-001DDO-003 FS-041 
1CMS1996 DDO$15FS-101 DDO-001   
1CMS1997 DDO$15FS-101  FS-101  
1CMS1998 WIDE "AM"$15   FS-901  
1CMS1999 WIDE "AM"$15   FS-901  
1CMS2000 WIDE "AM"$15   FS-901  
1CMS2004 DDR$15FS-801  DDR-001   
1CMS2006 DDO$15FS-101 DDO-004   
1CMS2014 DDO$15FS-101 DDO-001   
1CMS2015 DDO$15VP-001 DDO-001  WDDO-006
1CPF1951 DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-021.35 
1CPF1953 DDO$15FS-101 DDO-001 FS-021.7 
1CPF1955 TDR$15VP-001 DDR-007   
1CPF1956 DDO$15FS-101 DDO-002   
1CPF1956 DDR$15FS-801 DDR-004   
1CPF1960 SMALL DATE-      
1CPF1960 DDO SM/LG DATE$15FS-102VP-001DDO-002 FS-024 
1CPF1960 LARGE DATE-      
1CPF1960 DDO LG/SM DATE$15FS-101VP-002DDO-001 FS-025 
1CPF1960 TDO LG/SM DATE$15FS-103VP-003TDO-003 FS-023 
1CSP1964 -      
1CPF1968 S DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-005 FS-027.5 
1CPF1970 S SMALL DATE-      
1CPF1970 S DDO SMALL DATE$15VP-004 DDO-012   
1CPF1970 S LARGE DATE-      
1CPF1970 S DDO LG/SM DATE$15FS-102VP-001DDO-003 FS-030 
1CPF1970 S TDO LARGE DATE$15FS-107VP-002TDO-007 FS-030.4 
1CPF1970 S DDO LARGE DATE$15FS-113VP-003DDO-013 FS-030.6 
1CPF1971 S DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-032 
1CPF1971 S DDO$15FS-102VP-002DDO-002 FS-033 
1CPF1971 S DDO$15FS-103VP-003DDO-004 FS-033.1 
1CPF1972 S DDO$15FS-101VP-001DDO-001 FS-033.7 
1CPF1979 S TYPE 1-      
1CPF1979 S TYPE 2-      
1CPF1981 S TYPE 1-      
1CPF1981 S TYPE 2-      
1CPF1990 NO S-   FS-501  
1CPF1998 S CLOSE "AM"$15      
1CPF1999 S CLOSE "AM"$15   FS-901  

* In order to have the above varieties requiring the $15 fee designated by NGC, VarietyPlus service must be requested at time of grading. VarietyPlus service is also available for coins already encapsulated by NGC. For coins where the fee column is blank, no VarietyPlus charge is required to have your coin designated during grading. For coins marked $15, a $15 surcharge applies to the tier fee during grading, or a $15 fee applies to have the VarietyPlus designation added to any coin already graded and encapsulated by NGC.
Bowers, Q. David. A Guide Book of Lincoln Cents. Whitman Publishing, Atlanta, 2008
Breen, Walter. Walter Breen’s Complete Encyclopedia of U.S. and Colonial Coins. Doubleday/FCI Press, New York, 1988
Daughtrey, Charles D. Looking Through Lincoln Cents: Chronology of a Series. author, Springfield, MO, 2004
Fivaz, Bill & J.T. Stanton. The Cherrypickers' Guide to Rare Die Varieties, 5th Edition, Volume 1. Whitman Publishing, Atlanta, 2009
Lange, David W. The Complete Guide to Lincoln Cents. Bowers & Merena Galleries, Wolfeboro, NH, 1996
Wexler, John & Kevin Flynn. The Authoritative Reference on Lincoln Cents. KCK Press, Rancocas, 1996
Wexler, John A. The Lincoln Cent Doubled Die. Published by the author, 1984
Wiles, James, Ph.D. The RPM Book Second Edition: Lincoln Cents. Stanton Publishing, Savannah, GA, 1997