The 1919 wheat penny value depends on the mint mark and preservation level, so most collectors look only for those in the mint state. Even though each piece is a century old, those that spent years in circulation are practically worthless.
Interestingly, you can still find pieces minted in Philadelphia in use, meaning these incredible coins survived the Great Depression, WWII, and modern times. Finding those struck in San Francisco and Denver can be challenging, but their price is typically low.
1919 Lincoln wheat penny Value Chart
|Condition||1919 No Mint mark wheat penny||1919 D wheat penny||1919 S wheat penny|
|Mint state 60||$16||$74||$55|
|Mint state 63||$31||$121||$131|
*by USA Coin Book
History of the 1919 Lincoln Wheat Penny
The first Lincoln wheat pennies appeared in 1909, and their mintage lasted until 1958. In 1959, their reverse was replaced with the Lincoln Memorial in honor of the respected President’s 150th birth anniversary.
Even though American coins never depicted a real person by then, President Theodore Roosevelt looked for a unique way to commemorate the memory of this extraordinary man. His idea was to mint a coin with the Lincoln profile, despite initial opposition from traditionalists.
Lithuanian-born American engraver and sculptor Victor David Brenner designed this unique coin. Unfortunately, he ruined his reputation by placing oversized initials of the very first cents minted in 1909, and the US Mint removed them.
Since the US Mint restored VDB letters after a few years, you can see them under Lincoln’s shoulder on coins struck in 1919.
Lincoln wheat pennies produced in 1919 are among the most collectible American coinage. Beginner collectors particularly appreciate these pieces because of their affordable price.
On the other hand, you can’t find rare and highly appreciated pennies minted that year. The only key dates in the series are scarce and unique specimens, such as:
- 1909 S VDB and 1909 S Lincoln wheat pennies
- 1914 D Lincoln wheat penny
- 1922 plain Lincoln wheat penny
- 1931 S Lincoln wheat penny
Unlike the modest 1919 Lincoln wheat penny, these coins can be worth a fortune.
1919 Lincoln wheat penny
|Philadelphia||1919 No Mint mark wheat penny||392,021,000|
|Denver||1919 D wheat penny||57,154,000|
|San Francisco||1919 S wheat penny||139,760,000|
Features of 1919 Lincoln Wheat Penny
Lincoln pennies are common coins, and virtually every American has a few in their pockets. On the other hand, finding those in perfect condition can be tricky, so such pieces are highly collectible.
The obverse of the 1919 Lincoln wheat penny
Like other wheat pennies, the 1919 Lincoln penny contains the 16th American President centrally positioned on the obverse. His bust is facing right, with the DATE 1919 in front.
Besides, you can see an inscription IN GOD WE TRUST along the top coin rim and the word LIBERTY behind the bust.
A modest design also includes a small letter S or D below the date for coins minted in San Francisco or Denver. The designer’s initials VDB are hidden along the bust’s shoulder truncation.
The reverse of the 1919 Lincoln wheat penny
The simple reverse design includes centrally positioned:
- Denomination ONE CENT
- The country’s name UNITED STATES OF AMERICA divided into two rows
These inscriptions are surrounded by two wheat stalks, which is why this coin is nicknamed WHEAT PENNY. Finally, the motto E PLURIBUS UNUM is stretched along the top coin rim.
1919 Lincoln wheat penny
|Compound||Copper with tin or zinc in a 95%: 5% ratio|
|Face value||1 cent ($0.01)|
|Coin diameter||0.75 inches (19.05 mm)|
|Coin thickness||0.05984 inches (1.52 mm)|
|Coin weight||0.10970 ounces (3.11 g)|
Other features of the 1919 Lincoln wheat penny
The 1919 Lincoln wheat penny is a round one-cent coin made of 95% copper with added tin or zinc. Its diameter is 0.75 inches (19.05 mm), and its weight is precisely 0.10970 ounces (3.11 g). Like other pennies in the series, this one is 0.05984 inches (1.52 mm) thick and has a plain edge.
1919 Lincoln Wheat Penny Value Guides
In 1919, three mints struck 588,935,000 Lincoln wheat pennies from the regular strikes. That year, there were no proof coins minted.
1919 No Mint mark Lincoln wheat penny
With 392,021,000 produced 1919 Lincoln pennies, the Philadelphia mint had the largest mintage in the early series, from 1909 to 1933. However, this number held the record by 1940, making these coins abundant on the rarity scale.
1919 No Mint mark Lincoln wheat penny value
|Condition||1919 BN wheat penny||1919 RB wheat penny||1919 RD wheat penny|
|Good||$0.21 to $0.26||/||/|
|Very good||$0.25 to $0.30||/||/|
|Fine||$0.30 to $0.36||/||/|
|Very fine||$0.35 to $0.96||/||/|
|Extra fine||$1 to $2.40||/||/|
|AU||$4 to $6||/||/|
|MS 60||$6 to $7.20||/||/|
|MS 61||$8.70 to $10.44||/||/|
|MS 62||$10.50 to $12.60||/||/|
|MS 63||$14 to $16.80||$20 to $24||$35 to $42|
|MS 64||$20 to $24||$40 to $60||$70 to $84|
|MS 65||$65 to $85||$80 to $100||$220 to $264|
|MS 66||/||$150 to $200||$375 to $450|
|MS 67||/||/||$1,150 to $1,300|
|MS 68||/||/||$9,500 to $12,000|
Such high mintage results in a low penny price, so you can find any of these pieces in the mint state for a relatively modest $6 to $85. However, rare coins with fantastic red toning can be expensive.
For instance, many admirers are prepared to pay $9,500 to $12,000 for one in an MS 68 grade. The auction record won the 1919 MS 68 RD Lincoln wheat penny after one collector paid an incredible $18,000 for it at an auction in 2019.
1919 D Lincoln wheat penny
The Denver mint struck 57,154,000 Lincoln wheat pennies in 1919. These coins with the D mint mark are practically worthless in circulated condition, but well-preserved ones can be expensive. The price primarily depends on their color, and you can buy:
- Pennies with brown toning for $70 to $320
- Pennies with red-brown toning for $125 to $1,200
- Pennies with red toning for $160 to $36,000
1919 D Lincoln wheat penny value
|Condition||1919 D BN wheat penny||1919 D RB wheat penny||1919 D RD wheat penny|
|MS 62||$70 to $84||/||$160 to $192|
|MS 63||$85 to $102||$125 to $150||$185 to $220|
|MS 64||$130 to $156||$215 to $258||$300 to $360|
|MS 65||$250 to $320||$775 to $930||$950 to $1,100|
|MS 66||/||$850 to $1,200||$3,700 to $6,000|
|MS 67||/||/||$30,000 to $36,000|
Interestingly, the most pricey Lincoln penny struck this year is the red one in an MS 67 grade, paid $31,200 at an auction in 2019.
1919 S Lincoln wheat penny
With 139,760,000 produced pennies, the San Francisco mint had the second-highest mintage in 1919. You can buy one coin with brown toning for $90 to $385, while more desirable red-brown pieces cost approximately $120 to $1,600, depending on the condition.
1919 S Lincoln wheat penny value
|Condition||1919 S BN wheat penny||1919 S RB wheat penny||1919 S RD wheat penny|
|MS 63||$90 to $108||$120 to $144||$325 to $375|
|MS 64||$150 to $180||$255 to $306||$600 to $700|
|MS 65||$320 to $384||$675 to $810||$4,500 to $6,500|
|MS 66||/||$1,600||$20,000 to $24,000|
The most expensive are well-struck red pennies with a price range of $325 to $6,500, depending on ranking levels. Rare 1919 MS 66 Lincoln wheat pennies typically reach $20,000 to $24,000 at auctions.
Surprisingly, the auction record won a piece in an MS 65 grade. One collector set aside $31,050 for this beautifully toned penny at Bowers & Merena auction in 2007.
1919 Lincoln Penny Wheat Errors
As usual, errors are among the most expensive 1919 Lincoln pennies. Even though the US Mint estimates that 97.33% of old pennies are produced without imperfection, you can find a few collectible ones among coins struck this year.
Collectors recognize at least one doubled die 1919 Lincoln penny with doubling on wheat stalks and the motto E PLURIBUS UNUM. In most cases, such pieces are worth $100 to $200.
When pennies were not positioned correctly, or the planchet was misaligned, the result was an off-center piece. In most cases, the off-center range is from 15% to 20%, and such collectible coins are worth about $50. Those with 50% off center cost a few hundred dollars when the date and vital parts of the Lincoln bust are intact.
Re-punched mint mark
Since the mint mark was individually struck onto the working die, it was possible to get a letter punched at the wrong angle. In this case, it was a practice to re-punch it to look as required.
You can also find coins with the mint mark struck in the incorrect place. Most pieces with this error cost $5 to $25.
Die crack or die cud
Old dies cracked and became brittle over time, leaving visible cracks and lines of different thicknesses and lengths onto struck coins. The other option was forming die cracks on the coin rim, and such an imperfection was better known as a die cud.
Most collectors want to find one of these desirable pieces, but their value depends on the error location and size. While minor die cracks cost a dollar or two, those stretching across the entire coin surface can reach $50 to $100 on the market. Coins with sizable die cuds are typically worth $150.
FAQ about the 1919 Lincoln Wheat Penny
What makes a 1919 Lincoln wheat penny rare?
The 1919 Lincoln wheat pennies are typically abundant, but some red pieces in the mint mark can be less available. Plus, errors produced this particular year are often rare.
Which 1919 Lincoln wheat penny is worth a lot of money?
- The $31,200 worth 1919 D MS 67 RD Lincoln wheat penny sold at Heritage Auctions in 2019
- The $31,050 worth 1919 S MS 65 RD Lincoln wheat penny sold at Bowers & Merena auction in 2007
- The $18,000 worth 1919 MS 68 RD Lincoln wheat penny without the mint mark sold at Heritage Auctions in 2019
- The $2,820 worth 1919 D MS 65 RB Lincoln wheat penny sold at Heritage Auctions in 2015
- The $2,530 worth 1919 S MS 65 RB Lincoln wheat penny sold at Heritage Auctions in 2004
- The $898 worth 1919 D MS 66 BN Lincoln wheat penny sold on eBay in 2020
- The $780 worth 1919 MS 65 RB Lincoln wheat penny without the mint mark sold at Heritage Auctions in 2017
- The $690 worth 1919 S MS 62 BN Lincoln wheat penny sold at Bowers & Merena auction in 2009
- The $547 worth 1919 MS 65 BN Lincoln wheat penny without the mint mark sold on eBay in 2019
How much is the 1919 No Mint mark Lincoln wheat penny worth?
The 1919 Lincoln wheat penny is abundant nowadays, and most pieces cost approximately $6 to $85, depending on the condition. Only rare pieces with red toning in an MS 68 grade are worth $9,500 to $12,000. The most expensive is a coin sold at an auction in 2019 for $18,000.
What is the most pricey Lincoln wheat penny?
The most expensive Lincoln wheat penny was a bronze coin struck in 1943. Unlike other pieces made of steel struck during WWII to let use copper for war purposes, a few first pieces were minted on the planchet with some copper residue.
Since no one noticed the error, these coins were released in circulation. The US Mint estimates that about forty such pieces still exist, and one dedicated collector paid a breathtaking $1.7 million for one in 2010.