These Rare 1955 Wheat Pennies In Your Coin Collection Could Be Worth $20,000 or More
I have an old Wheat Penny collection that I inherited and I’m shocked by how many different errors were made during production of these pennies. What was meant to be worth 1 cent can now be worth thousands. If you have the right one. That’s why I shake my head when I see people at the grocery store pouring their change into the coin machine. Did you take the time to go through that change? Probably not. Earlier I wrote about the super rare 1943 Wheat penny. I only had one penny from 1943, and it wasn’t the one worth the money. Then I read about the 1955 Doubled Die Lincoln Penny. I found 14 of those 1955 wheat pennies in my collection.
So here’s what we’re looking for.
According to The Spruce Crafts, “In 1955 a die maker at the United States Mint facility in Philadelphia made a mistake while manufacturing a working coin die for the Lincoln cent.” An alignment issue caused the date and the letters to be doubled. As many as 24,000 of these error coins were made. But where was quality control? Well. The thought is was that the coins were produced on an overnight shift and no one was watching the press. Perhaps the employees started the machines and went down for cheesesteaks. With the press running at 200 coins per minute that’s about 2 hours before someone noticed. The math checks out.
Interestingly enough, the error was spotted before the coins were circulated. But they were mixed in with about 10 million other pennies so rather than scrap the whole batch they sent them out.
The 1955 Doubled Die Wheat Penny
In this example, the doubling is very obvious. I have 14 pennies from 1955 and none of them have the doubling so it looks like I’m still considering selling internal organs to make rent. I kid, sorta. it would have been nice. My penny is worth 6 cents Did you find the doubled one? Here’s what you can expect, and it’s all about the condition.
If your 1955 Wheat Pennies are beat up, it should still be worth at least a couple thousand. Perfect condition can be valued up to $288,000. This video breaks down the values a bit better.
One word of caution before you get too excited. Because this coin is so popular, there are forgeries. You’ll need to get your penny professionally graded before you start planning on what to do with the money.