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COLECCIONISTAS DE MONEDAS

Check the Value of your 1919 Lincoln penny in 2022 (Up To $22,000!)

Updated 21 Nov, 2022 •reading-time 6-8'
Reviewed by
EXTERNAL SOURCES: pcgs.com ngccoin.com coins.ha.com
INDEPENDENT SOURCES: usmint.gov money.org

Ed. note: This article is periodically updated to reflect the current price of most valuable coins.

Coleccionistasdemonedas.com estimates the values of the 1919 Lincoln Wheat Penny at:

Mint MarkVFAU58MS60 RDMS65 RDMS66 RD
1919$5$50$50$320$500
1919-D$32$80$150$1,600$5,500
1919-S$18$80$120$6,000$22,000
1919 Lincoln Wheat penny value order by mint mark and grade. Source: Coleccionistasdemonedas.com

The 1919 wheat penny belongs to the first issue of the Lincoln cent from 1909 to 1958 and is characterized by the reverse design composed of two ears of wheat. From 1959 this reverse was modified by the Lincoln Memorial, designed by Frank Gasparro, until 2008.
This 1919 penny was made of 95% copper, 5% zinc, and tin with a diameter of 19 mm and a weight of 3.11 grams. Victor D. Brenner was the author of its design.

What should you consider if you want to collect or invest in the 1919 penny?

As always, when we talk about the value of the Lincoln cent (we have several articles from different years of the Lincoln cent), we must distinguish mainly between mints and tonalities. Nor should we ignore the grade of preservation of each coin (uncirculated in most cases).

With the previous set, we can get an idea of the value of the coin we have in our hands or the one we want to acquire.

We will give you some good tips so that you can grade your 1919 Lincoln coin.

How can I identify the mint mark?

For the 1919 Lincoln Cent, we will distinguish between mints by looking at the letter below the date.

No Mint mark

Thus, we will not find any letter from the Philadelphia mint, just the date with nothing underneath.

1919 cent Philadelphia
1919 penny Philadelphia. Source: coleccionistasdemonedas.com

D Mint mark

For the Denver mint, you will see a D below the date.

1919 cent Denver
1919 D penny. Source: coleccionistasdemonedas.com

S Mint mark

The San Francisco mint is easily identifiable. It corresponds to an S letter.

1919 cent S
1919 S penny. Source: coleccionistasdemonedas.com

Which mintages are scarcer? Penny value and the number of units struck

The mintages, that is to say, the total number of units produced in this year 1919, are different, and it also depends on this that they are easier to obtain or scarcer.

  • Philadelphia. Total production 392,021,000 units.
  • Denver: Total production 57,154,000 units.
  • San Francisco: Total production 139,760,000 units.

1919 penny value: the importance of color and shade on value

The second aspect you must consider when calculating the value is the tonality of the coin. Thus, the most sought-after and valuable Lincoln cents for collectors are those we can classify as RED (“RD” because of their reddish tone as if they had just come out of the factory). In second place is the Lincoln cent RED & BROWN (“RB”), and in the third position is the BROWN (“BN”).

Here is an example of a 1910 one cent so you can see the difference between these three classifications:

Wheat penny 1910 COLOURS
Types of Wheat penny 1910 patina. Source: coleccionistasdemonedas.com

And also, talking about the economic value of the 1919 wheat penny, you should look for and properly value the minting errors, which are also very collectible and valued.

If you are not very familiar with the valuation of the errors, do not worry. At the end of this article, we list the most common and most valued 1919 wheat penny errors.

What are the most valuable 1919 wheat pennies?

The number of units greatly influences the three highest auction prices achieved in the last few years. Thus the most valuable is the Denver (which is the mint with the smallest production of the three), the second is the San Francisco, and the third is the Philadelphia.

All of the specimens in the ranking have RED toning, remembering that it is the most sought-after and valuable of the three different ones, as we have seen above:

#1 1919-D MS67 RD – $31,200

As we have commented, Denver is the mint with the smallest manufacture of Lincoln cents of the three.

In January 2019, a 1919-D MS67 RED PCGS encapsulated cent reached a record $31,200 at Heritage Auctions.

It is not unusual considering that only two specimens of the 1919-D Wheat penny encapsulated by PCGS exist in MS67 quality(link here). It belonged to the Jerald L. Martin collection.

In case you were wondering what is the top quality for this 1919-D RD Wheat penny encapsulated by PCGS we inform you that they only have one specimen in MS67+ quality.

This year 2022, has seen several 1919-D Wheat one centREDs at auction, of course in condition lower than MS67.

For example, the 1919-D RED in MS66 appeared in 2022 on as many as three occasions fetching between $4,320 and $5,400, quite attractive prices compared to pre-pandemic years.

#2 1919-S MS66 RD – $20,400

On the PCGS scale of 1919-S RED Lincoln Wheat Reverse examples, only six are graded MS66 RD, with none higher.

Although a 1919-S holds the auction record, MS65 RED sold for $31,050 in 2007. In this article, we will only look at the last few years.

Thus, a 1919-S MS65 RD from the Bender collection was auctioned in 2022 at $11,100. Good auction price, but pretty far from the maximum of 2007.

In 2019-2021 the 1919-S MS65 RD sold between $2,640 and $6,120, so the former specimen fetched a very good price.

Regarding the top grades of the 1919-S Lincoln Wheat penny, we must go all the way to 2019 to see an MS66 RD specimen that sold for $20,400 and belonged to the Jerald L. Martin collection.

#3 1919 MS68 RD – $18,000

The record at auction for a 1919 Lincoln cent of the Philadelphia mint was $18,000 in 2019 at Heritage auction for an MS68 RED specimen.

More recently, in August of this same year, 2022, another specimen of the same characteristics (MS68 RD) PCGS CAC ex Bender collection sold at Heritage Auctions for $12,000.

There is only one superior specimen graded by PCGS as MS69 (Stewart Blay collection).

Also, in 2022 we have seen 1919 Lincoln cents in MS67 RD grades sell for between $1,116 and $1,821, similar to 2021.

What are the most valuable 1919 wheat penny errors?

We have already seen above that the global production of the 1919 Lincoln Wheat penny approached 600 million units produced between the three mints. Such a large number of coins not only means that we have to look for high grades for our collection or investment, but we can also look for issues with minting errors, regardless of the quality.

In addition, these minting errors are not documented and can often be found in circulation and even without encapsulation.

Let’s see some examples with their auction or sale prices:

#1 Error Struck Off Center

1919 cent struck off center
Error 1919 cent struck off center. Source: coleccionistasdemonedas.com

This error occurs when the coin blank receives the partial imprint of the dies as it moves inside the machine.

The most valued 1919 Lincoln Wheat penny struck off-center are the ones that, as long as you can recognize the date and mint, have the most off-center mintage. Here is an example of a 1919-S MS60 BN that sold for $374 in 2010 with a 75% offset:

1919 cent struck 75% off center
1919 cent struck 75% off center. Source: coleccionistasdemonedas.com

Although you should also look at the degree of preservation of the coin and the toning, remember Red, Red & Brown, and Brown.

In 2021 a 40% off center error was auctioned at $1,080, a 1919 MS67 RB but counting with a high grading.

A Denver specimen with the same 40% offset but MS64 BN was auctioned in 2019 for $660.

#2 Error Double Struck

1919 cent double struck
1919 cent double struck. Source: Mercado Libre

In this error, there is a double strike on the coin as it was caught and received the second strike.

It can be seen perfectly in the upper obverse legend “IN GOD WE TRUST.”

In 2021 a 1919 MS65 BN sold for $780:

#3 Error Broadstruck

1919 cent broadstruck
1919 cent broadstruck. Source: coleccionistasdemonedas.com

In this error, the coin blank is not properly attached to the collar, so the mintage causes the edge to expand. An example of this error is the one that was auctioned in 2006 at Heritage Auctions, a 1919 Lincoln wheat penny Broadstruck MS65 Brown graded by NGC that fetched $431:

Today, 16 years later, this same specimen could have seen its value double.

#4 Error 1919 Lincoln cent minted on 10C coinage Argentina

Minted on a die 10C Argentina coin, this lincoln cent error weighed 3 g and was graded by NGC as Details. VF and fetched a price of $552.