1943 Lincoln Wheat Pennies

1943 Lincoln Wheat Pennies

1943 Lincoln Wheat Pennies
1943 Lincoln Wheat Pennies Value

Coin Info

Melt Value
United States
Steel Coin
Face Value
$0.01 USD
Issuing Mint
U.S. Mint
Year Issued

Just as the Jefferson Nickel five-cent coin saw the removal of nickel from its composition in 1942 to preserve the metal for artillery production, so, too, did Lincoln Wheat Penny coins in 1943. Copper was completely eliminated from the denomination’s composition, in favor of a one-year-only type featuring a zinc-plated steel composition. These “steel cents” or “steel Pennies” as they are commonly called, were quite unpopular when they first were released. Today, however, many coin collectors and non-collectors alike regard 1943 Pennies as something of a novelty. What needs to be remembered, though, is that 1943 steel Pennies are not rare – in fact, they are quite common, with more than 1 billion produced across all three mints operating in 1943: Philadelphia, Denver (D), and San Francisco (S).

While 1943 steel Pennies are about as common as any other 1940s Lincoln cent, there is one variety from 1943 that stands out for its rarity: the 1943 bronze Lincoln Wheat Penny. Approximately 30 to 40 1943 Pennies were inadvertently struck on 1942 bronze coin Planchets. This minting error has resulted in a coin that is worth around $100,000 and is currently the most expensive Penny in the realm of coin collecting.

Regular 1943 steel cents, on the other hand, can be had for between 10 cents and $1 each in circulated grades, and for about $3 to $5 in uncirculated grades. There are also “reprocessed” steel Pennies, which are essentially 1943 steel Pennies that had become corroded (due to the rust-prone nature of their steel core) and later stripped of their original zinc coating, and recoated with a fresh layer of zinc. These are numismatically worthless since they are altered coins. Nevertheless, they are a cost-effective alternative to buying uncirculated 1943 Pennies and are popular in the non-numismatic market.

No proof Lincoln cents were made in 1943, nor would any proof coins be struck again by the United States Mint until 1950.

Comments (14)

  1. Orlando Davis

IMG_0058.PNG & IMG_0067.JPG will my coins still b worth anything if it looks like this 1943D wheat copper or bronze penny


Hello, Orlando --

The images aren't coming through unfortunately. Would you please try and repost these images here?

Thank you!

  1. Coin Values    Orlando Davis

Orlando, if you have attachments it's better to post in our forum: https://coinvalues.com/forum.

This comment section is dedicated more to general commenting.

  1. Sandy Hendrickson

I have 1943 steel wheat pennies among many others,have no access to internet much,am wondering if theyre worth more than face value?

  1. Coin Values    Sandy Hendrickson

As you can see in this article, 1943 steel Wheat Pennies are not worth much more than face value. Depending on how heavily circulated the coin is, you could get between 10¢ and $1.

  1. irene

how do you tell if it is the right 1943 penny stated in one article if the penny sticks to the magnetic it is fake and another place states that if it does not stick it is a fake which of these statements are actually the right one. Thank you

  1. Joshua McMorrow-Hernandez    irene

Hello, Irene --

I just replied to another similar post of your but in case you don't see that post kindly let me reply again...

The magnet test verifies rather or not a 1943 cent is made from steel or copper, not rather or not it is authentic.

If your 1943 penny DOES stick to a magnet, it is made from steel and is worth 10 to 50 cents.

If your 1943 penny does NOT stick to a magnet it may be a copper cent error that is worth $85,000 or more.

Best wishes,
Josh @ CoinValues

  1. AhDyell Font

Hello, I am trying to figure out where do I share the photo, of my 1944 Penny minted in Philly andif it has any value?

  1. Coin Values    AhDyell Font

You can use the upload file icon below the text entry box, or post in our forum.

  1. Christie Harvey

I just wanted to know, How can you tell if you have a steel penny, or a bronze penny?

Thank you,

  1. Coin Values    Christie Harvey

Christie, first you would need to see if the penny sticks to a magnet. If so, depending on whether it is a 1943 or 1944, you can continue verifying its authenticity. Please see this forum post for more information: https://coinvalues.com/forum/1944-wheat-penny#reply-6

  Comment was last edited about 2 years ago by Coin Values Coin Values
  1. Terrylin Marie Neuy

I have a 43 s copper looking penny on one side, steel on the other. How can I find more info on this coin?

  1. Coin Values    Terrylin Marie Neuy

1943 pennies are indeed steel. If one side has a different tone than the other it is most likely due to exposure to something or deliberate alteration.

  1. Steven Moore

I have 1943 double die copper pennies and 1943 copper penine that is in good shape no magnet sticks I have got them I want to sell

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