The Lincoln penny is a classic hallmark of American currency. Having been produced for well over 100 years, and with some of the most iconic imagery of any coin in the world, it is no surprise that they are highly sought after by collectors. With that being said, collectors are often disappointed to find out that the number of 1910 Lincoln pennies remaining is comparatively small to the total number produced. As a result, there is a mad scramble for collectors to get their hands on the absolutely most well-preserved pieces. This, however, is not always so easy.
The Lincoln penny’s design is a bit different now than it was in 1910. Back then, like today, the obverse side of the coin featured the raised profile image of Abraham Lincoln, one of the most prestigious of all US presidents. Arching overtop of Lincoln’s image are the words “In God We Trust,” while the word “Liberty” is inscribed to the left of the central image. To Lincoln’s right there is a raised marking for the 1910 year of minting.
As for the reverse, the central part of the face features 2 inscriptions, one that says “United States of America,” and one that boasts the one-cent face value of the coin. Arching over the top are the Latin words “E Pluribus Unum.” On either side of the reverse you will find two single stalks of wheat which are raised from the coin’s face.
For collectors, the condition of a coin as old as the 1910 Lincoln penny is of the utmost importance. As such, it is no wonder that most surviving coins from this year have been graded. In essence, a grade is the official certification on the part of an expert which states the coin’s condition. Below is a listing of the different grades as well as what they might mean for the 1910 penny.
Uncirculated: If you have an Uncirculated 1910 Lincoln penny, you will be in possession of a coin that never exchanged hands and was kept in safekeeping straight from the day it was minted. The coin’s face will show absolutely no imperfections, even under close inspection. Right away it is easy to see why these coins are so valuable in the eyes of collectors.
Extremely Fine: The Extremely Fine grade, in terms of a Lincoln penny, is given to pieces that might have spent a very limited amount of time on the open market. Under extremely close inspection these coins will show some signs of wear, but to the naked eye they will look mostly pristine.
Fine: If a coin is determined to be of Fine grade, this means that it will show some signs of wear, such as scratching and smoothing, but will overall look to be in decent shape. On these coins, some of the smaller inscriptions such as the Liberty inscription might be smoothed down to the point where they are difficult to make out entirely.
Good: The Good grade is given to coins that have been worn down significantly thanks to their years and years in circulation. Many of the raised aspects of the small 1910 Lincoln Penny will have been compromised due to age and wear.
If you are wondering what you will pay for a 1910 Lincoln, this is something that will coincide directly with the coin’s grade. With that being said, these coins are on the more affordable side of things and therefore perfect for the beginning collector as even the most pristine piece will not break the bank. Below is a chart listing what you might pay for a graded 1910 Lincoln penny.
|1910 Lincoln Penny||$0.35||$1||$4||$10|
|1910 Lincoln Penny (S)||$17||$22||$45||$80||Source: Red Book|