The 1944 Lincoln wheat penny is among the most common wheat pennies today. Most collectors are ready to choose it over several other coins minted between 1909 and 1958 because of its numismatic value and attractive design.
The 1944 Wheat penny is a copper coin with no silver or tin content. Its value ranges from 20 cents to 50 cents, but it could be worth way more than that, depending on its qualities.
For instance, a 1944 wheat penny in certified mint state (MS+) condition can fetch between $6 and $8 at an auction. In 2018, bidders were ready to part with up to $24,000 for a rare 1944-D/S Lincoln cent.
1944 wheat pennies are old coins minted in the United States decades ago. There’s a variety of them, depending on the mint marks they bear. These inscriptions also affect how they are priced. This article discusses every crucial detail worth knowing about the 1944 Wheat penny.
1944 Wheat Penny Value Chart
|Mint mark||Good||Fine||Extremely Fine||Uncirculated|
1944 no mint mark Wheat Penny Value
1944 “D’ Wheat Penny Value
1944 “S” Wheat Penny Value
1944 Steel Wheat Penny Value
What is the 1944 wheat penny?
The 1944 Penny is one of the cents Victor David Brenner designed. It was manufactured from recycled ammunition shell metal. It marked the comeback of Lincoln pennies with copper material.
Unlike the previous wheat coins with copper, zinc, and tin, this cent came with copper and zinc only.
1944 “D”, “S” & “No Mint Mark” Wheat Penny
The Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Denver Mints in the US minted over 2.1 billion 1944 pennies.
The Philadelphia mint produced 1,435,400,000 pieces without a mintmark. The Denver mint struck 430,578,000 units with the mint mark “D.” At the San Francisco mint, 282,760,000 1944 pennies were made, and these came with the “S” mintmark.
It’s worth noting that the 1944 wheat penny was one of the most minted coins in US history. Many others did not exceed the 1 billion mark.
Reason for Minting the 1944 Penny
The 1944 Penny was minted during World War II. A year before the production of this coin began, people used the 1943 Lincoln penny, which came with a zinc-coated steel composition. The government did not use copper because it wanted to save it for making ammunition for the war.
However, most people complained that the 1943 penny corroded too fast and was not an ideal currency. There was also another lot that couldn’t distinguish this coin from a dime.
The government responded to these outcries by minting the 1944 Wheat penny and deliberately using copper. This coin would not rust as fast as the 1943 penny, plus Americans could quickly identify it.
1944 wheat penny Features
Before you determine the value of your 1944 penny, first confirm that what you have is indeed a 1944 Lincoln cent. The following are the features your penny must-have.
An Abraham Lincoln portrait dominates the obverse of the 1944 Wheat penny.
Head and Tail Features of the 1944 Lincoln Penny
The head of the 1944 Penny comes with an Abraham Lincoln profile. The year “1944” is engraved to the right of the portrait. To the left of the image is an inscription that reads “LIBERTY.”
Arching overtop the 1944 Wheat penny is another inscription reading “IN GOD WE TRUST.”
On the 1944-penny’s reverse side, you’ll find two inscriptions: “The United States of America” and “One Cent.” There are two wheat stalks situated on the right and left outer edge of this coin’s tail. Arching overtop is the phrase “E Pluribus Unum.”
1944 pennies minted at the Philadelphia mint bear no mintmark.
Those produced at the Denver mint come with a “D” mintmark right under the year “1944”.
1944 pennies minted at the San Francisco mint have the mintmark “S” under the date.
Metals Used to Make the 1944 Penny
The 1944 penny was made with copper (95%) and zinc (5%).
Weight and Dimensions
The diameter of the 1944 penny is 19 millimeters, while its weight is 3.1 grams.
1944 wheat penny value
1944 Wheat Penny Value Chart
|Mint mark||Good||Fine||Extremely Fine||Uncirculated|
|1944 no mint mark Wheat Penny Value||$0.20||$0.20||$0.4||$0.89|
|1944 “D’ Wheat Penny Value||$0.20||$0.20||$0.4||$1.14|
|1944 “S” Wheat Penny Value||$0.30||$0.30||$0.5||$2.31|
|1944 Steel Wheat Penny Value||$10,000.00||$50,000.00||$100,000.00||$500,000.00|
The 1944 Penny was minted in large quantities and is readily available. Therefore, its value is lower than that of other less common coins such as the 1943 copper-alloy cent and the 1914-S Lincoln cent.
Denominational value of the 1944 wheat Penny
The face value of the 1944 Penny is one cent or $0.01.
How much is the 1944 wheat Penny worth at a pawn shop?
The price of a 1944 penny at a pawnshop will vary because pawnbrokers consider elements such as condition and rarity when working out the price of a particular piece. The average price of a 1944 penny at the pawnshop is 20 cents.
Factors influencing the 1944 Wheat Penny Value
Various elements affect how 1944 Pennies are priced today. Some of these are as follows:
1944 pennies are not that rare due to their high figure production. Therefore, unless this coin possesses extremely scarce features, its standard price remains $0.15 – $0.35.
A misstruck 1944 Penny falls under the ‘rare’ coin category. Although billions of these pennies were minted, only several of them came with errors, massively increasing their value.
Some of the typical 1944 penny errors known to exist are:
- Clipped coin errors
- Double strikes
- Off-center strikes
- An S over D mint mark error
- 1944 S Die Break Obverse
The 1944 Steel penny is a scarce coin, which was presumably minted by accident. Less than 24 of them were produced.
These steel pennies were created due to remnant steel planchets used to make pennies in the previous year (1943).
How can you differentiate a 1944 steel penny from a 1944 copper cent? Steel coins stick to magnets, and they are not easy to come by. This makes them more valuable than 1944 copper pennies.
While the price tag of a 1944 copper coin can read only 20 cents, one made from steel could sell for up to $100,000+.
1944 wheat pennies are graded according to their condition. Let’s check out the coin grades for these cents, what they mean and how they affect the penny value.
- Good: A 1944 penny in this condition looks its worst due to heavy damage. It’s hard for anyone to see the lettering and imagery on it. Its market value is considerably low.
- Fine: 1944 pennies in fine condition have been in circulation for a long time, but they have not suffered much damage. This coin’s major features are visible, and its price is higher than that of a cent in good condition.
- Extremely fine: A 1944 penny with extremely fine grading is close to perfection. It may have one scratch or flaw that is difficult to spot. Its value is more than that of coins in good and fine conditions.
- Uncirculated: This is the best grade a 1944 penny can have. It means the coin has only been through a few hands, and it looks almost new, save for a slight discoloration. Uncirculated 1944 pennies are more expensive than all others in the conditions mentioned above.
How new the 1944 Penny is
Let’s assume, for instance, you have two 1944 pennies; a clean/new and an old one. The former is in better condition and unquestionably worth more than the latter.
1944 wheat penny value FAQ
Is the 1944 Wheat penny worth anything?
Yes. The 1944 Wheat penny without a mint mark is worth about 15 cents. One with a “D” mintmark in Extremely Fine condition could sell for about twenty cents. If it’s Uncirculated, expect it to be priced at around 35 cents. 1944 Wheat pennies with distinctive attributes could be worth thousands of dollars.
Are 1944 Lincoln wheat pennies rare today?
No. 1944 Lincoln pennies are not scarce because the US Mint produced over 2 billion of them. Today, you could find many of them with passionate numismatists who appreciate their value.
Many pawnshops also keep these wheat pennies and are willing to sell them at the right price, depending on their actual worth.
Even so, there are some rare 1944 Wheat pennies, such as those with errors.
Do collectors like the 1944 wheat penny?
Yes. Countless collectors like the 1944 penny because it could be worth as much as $8 or more. Notably, coin dealers don’t accept all pieces. They prefer graded ones because it’s easier to price them.
How do I discover the value of my 1944 Wheat penny?
Interested in knowing the value of your 1944 penny? Here’s what you should do first:
- Identify its mint mark
- Grade it according to its current condition
- Check if it has some unique qualities, such as errors. Some attributes will either increase or minimize its value.
It’s best to follow these steps with a professional collector or coin dealer if you’re a novice.
How many 1944 wheat pennies were minted, and where were they produced?
Over 2 billion 1944 Lincoln pennies were produced at the Denver, San Francisco, and Philadelphia mints.
Final Thoughts: Is the 1944 Lincoln Penny Worth Collecting?
Abraham Lincoln is an iconic figure in our politics- and coins, too! The 1944 wheat penny is part of a larger series of Lincoln series that bear the president’s portrait on the obverse and a pair of wheat stalks at the reverse.
While the face value of a 1944 penny is 1 cent, the coin is worth about 15 cents. The mint struck about a billion Lincoln pennies in 1944, and that’s why they are not rare.
If you are a numismatic enthusiast with any burning questions about the 1944 Lincoln penny, be sure to tell us!