1950 Wheat Penny Value in Uncirculated Penny

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1950 Wheat Penny Overview

The 1950 Wheat Penny, featuring the Lincoln bust and Wheat Reverse, is a coin loved widely by collectors and investors, alike, with an interesting history and origin story. 

This category of penny had a long run of 50 years of production from the US mint. It was first minted in 1909 and was minted until 1958.

1950 Wheat Penny

The 1950 Wheat Penny

The Wheat Penny is the only coin that has seen the United States go through the Great Depression and two world wars. Initially minted to replace the Indian Head Penny, the Wheat Penny was well-received by consumers. The popularity for the new Wheat Penny is what led to its long-running 50-year life.

Designed by Victor D. Brenner, the Wheat Penny, officially known as the Lincoln cent, featured a former president for the first time, despite protests from conservatives which desired to hold to the old standard of not putting presidents on coins, based on the direction from George Washington. 

1950 wheat penny front

Despite this pushback, Theodore Roosevelt selected the 16th President Abraham Lincoln for the new penny as a way to celebrate the 100th year of his birth. Following minting, consumers loved the coin, but there were open criticisms about Brenner’s initials being too large, resulting in a slight design change.

Brenner’s design on the obverse featured a bust of Lincoln facing right, with “IN GOD WE TRUST” centered above it. The date is located  in the lower right of the obverse design with “LIBERTY” on the left side of Lincoln’s shoulder.

front and back with one cent

The reverse design shows two wheat ears surrounding the words “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” and “ONE CENT”. “E PLURIBUS UNUM” is centered above this main design element. Generally, Brenner intended to design a simple but effective reverse side.

Collectors frequently select the Wheat Penny as the very first series to collect because of its high visibility and price, and because of its long run, this allows collectors to enjoy finding these coins widely.

In fact, the Wheat Penny series is not only the longest-minted coin in US history, as well as being produced in far greater numbers than any other coin known to be minted in the history of the world. 

old pennies

The Wheat Pennies’ legacy continues to live on, with it being one of the most easily recognizable coins that are no longer in circulation. Most collectors do have some type of Wheat Penny Collection, and it is the coin that brought most people to coin collecting in the first place.

If you want to learn more about the Wheat Penny or other rare and collectible cents, be sure to read our Ultimate Guide to Pennies.

History of the 1950 Wheat Penny

Three mint locations–San Francisco, Philadelphia and Denver–struck pennies in 1950. 

Denver struck by far the most: 334,950,000. This was almost double the amount struck by San Francisco, which struck 118,505,000 quarters. And Philadelphia which struck 272,686,386 pennies.

Around 1950, the United States Mint began shifting which Mint produced the most number of Wheat Pennies. Before 1950, most pennies were minted at Philadelphia with a smaller amount minted at Denver. After 1950, most pennies were minted at Denver, with a lesser amount produced at Philadelphia. And that shift can be seen in the amount of pennies minted at each location in 1950.

1950 Wheat Penny Proofs

The mintage of Wheat Pennies in 1950 was the first time since the second World War ended that proof pennies were issued. Only 50,000 proofs were minted and, because of this, they are worth approximately $80, if found to be in perfect condition. Many of these proofs have been maintained in mint condition and, though not rare to find, are more difficult to locate.

Valuing the 1950 Wheat Penny

Bestseller No. 2
1958 Wheat Penny Complete Original Roll 50 Coins Brilliant Uncirculated
  • Great solid date 50-coin roll of BU 1958 Wheat pennies.
  • Nice coins which could easily match mint state quality.

Roughly, this coins value, in average condition, can be estimated to be valued at about $0.15, while a 1950 Wheat Penny in certified mint state (MS+) condition might auction for as much as $13*. We always advise when it comes to value coins like the wheat penny to have it appraised by a reputable coin dealer or service.

* This estimated value does not reference any standard coin grading scale. So, when we state ‘average’, this is meant to mean ‘in a similar condition to other coins issued in 1950’, and ‘mint state’ meaning the coin has been certified MS+ by one of the top coin grading companies

If you want to learn more about the Wheat Penny or other rare and collectible cents, be sure to read our Ultimate Guide to Pennies.

1950 Wheat Penny

Other Pennies: