1910 Penny

by Chad Eicher

1910 Penny

How much is a 1910 wheat penny worth?

A one in poor condition is worth 55 cents while one is good to great condition can be worth up to $55. Worth varies by copper prices.

1910 P Wheat Penny

Rarity: This issue is readily available in all grades including choice BU. Although not truly common, enough red gems exist to meet the demand for this grade level. A number of slight tonal variations are found, but coppery red is the underlying color. Original rolls may yet exist.

Varieties: Two obverse cud die breaks are known, as well as three retained cuds for the reverse. Vestigial traces of the letters VDB may yet turn up from leftover 1909 VDB reversed dies that were only partly effaced.

The numeral 0 is the date is distinctly oversize in relation to the other numeral’s. This may have been an intentional action, as the smaller 0 would have increased the likelihood of its center breaking out of the die. This phenomenon was behind the replacement of the 1960 small date hub with the large date hub

This date was easily locat din circulation as late as the 1960’s sometimes nearly worn slick,. Inflation has eaten away at its value, particularly in lower grades.

In his annual Report to Treasury Secretary Franklin MacVeagh, Mint Director George E Roberts commented on what he considered the unsuitability of bronze coinage. The composition of the 1-cent piece, 95 per cent copper and 5 per cent tin and zinc, is unsatisfactory.

The coins soon become dull and dirty in appearance and when exposed to the salt air to the seacoast are rendered unfit for circulation. This is particularly noticeable of coins which lie for a time in slot machines. They are offered for redemption in bad condition and must be remelted. When handled in the Treasury offices and mints an objectionable dust arises from them.

The act adopting the present composition was passed in 1864, prior to which date the 1-cent piece was issued under the act of February 21, 1857, which provided for a composition of 88 per cent copper and 12 per cent nickel.

The mint officials have always regarded the change as a backward step, and in the opinion of the bureau the percentage of nickel should have been increased instead of reduced.

As if to illustrate his point, as of Fiscal year 1911 the US Mints had destroyed a total of 41,205,127 bronze cents of earlier years which were deemed unfit for further circulation as the result of extreme wear or mutilation. This left a total of 1,944,304,861 pieces outstanding.

Given such a high rate of attrition, it’s amazing that so many early bronze cent still exist at all. In FY1911 alone, some 2,959,454 bronze cents were melted, along with $96.46 worth of obsolete half cents and large cents, 34,950 copper nickel cents, 13,650 copper nickel five cent pieces.

The Mint spent a grand total of $1.80 purchasing tin and zinc, which was added to the melted half cents and large cents to bring their metal to the proper alloy for coining new cents.

1910 S Wheat Penny

Amount Minted: 6,045,000

Rarity: Original rolls were known as late as the 1970’s, and small hoards of red or red brown coins were beign marketed eve in the 1980s, most notably by Bowers & Mere galleries. The population report data verifies that this date is common in mint state, with money choice examples to be found. True gems are fairly east to find, and they appear with more frequency than for other S-Mint Lincoln cents before 1929. In circulated grades, this issue has never been plentiful, and it qualifies as a semi key date.

Varieties: Three repunched mintmark varieties are known, the first two being distinct even to the naked eye. Specimens have been reported having vestigial traces of the letters VDB it’s not clear whether these letters remained on the working die or the working hub, but the former is more likely.

Other Facts: This date is generally well struck.

Among the improvements made to the coining process at this time was the adoption of automated feeding tubes for the coin presses at all three mints. This reduced the total number of employees required in the coining operation.

The coinage of minor pieces did not call for the strictest security and standards. As a result, coin blanks were often purchased from outside contractors rather than being produced within the mints.

During Fiscal Year 1911, which ran from July 1, 1910 through June 30, 1911, the mints used a combination of blanks from both sources. Contracts provided a little over 408,000 pounds in bronze cent blanks at a cost of $96,394,92. It isn’t specified whether these blanks had already been milled, or upset when received.

Photo of author

Article by

Chad Eicher

Detectorist Chad is passionate about metal detecting since he got his first metal detector as a gift when he was 12 years old. He created Metal Pursuits to share his knowledge and create the ultimate metal detecting resource on the web.

Subscribe to MP Monthly

Once a month we email detectorists like you with the top tips, insights and best deals to improve your treasure hunting game. Sign up below to get the next one.