- Category: Penny History
The U.S. one-cent coin is 19 millimeters in diameter and weighs 2.5 grams.
The composition of the penny is 97.5% zinc and 2.5 % copper.
There have been 16 different designs featured on the penny.
According to the U.S. Treasury, a circulating coin (e.g., penny, nickel, dime) lasts nearly 30 years. (See also coin production and circulation data via the Treasury)
The most "expensive" penny is a very rare 1943 copper alloy cent. Only 40 were produced and one sold for $1.7 million in 2012.
During its early penny-making years, the U.S. Mint was so short on copper that it accepted copper utensils, nails and scrap from the public to melt down for the coins.
The Lincoln penny was the first U.S. coin to feature a historic figure. President Abraham Lincoln has been on the penny since 1909, the 100th anniversary of his birth.
The Lincoln penny was the first one-cent coin on which appeared the words "In God We Trust."