Abraham Lincoln reference site established 2005

Lincoln Cent (2009 Bicentennial Penny)

See also:

Lincoln Cent (1909-2008)
Lincoln Cent (2010-Present)
Encased Cents (Collectibles)

2009 Lincoln Penny

On February 12, 2009, the US Mint released the first of four new designs for the Lincoln penny. The date marked the 200th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln, and the year marked the 100th anniversary of the Lincoln penny.

Lincoln was born February 12, 1809, in LaRue County, Kentucky. The nearest town was about three miles away--a town now called Hodgenville.

Two hundred years later, U.S. Mint Deputy Director Andy Brunhart and Kentucky Governor Steven L. Beshear presided over a ceremony at the LaRue County High School gym in Hodgenville, Kentucky. "The new Lincoln cent is a milestone moment for the United States Mint and for our country," said Brunhart.  "The coin is a tribute to a humble man who rose to great heights living by principles of honesty, integrity and loyalty, principles that never go out of fashion.  More importantly, Americans will forever hold dear Lincoln's legacy - an enduring Nation, united in the pursuit of equality for all."

The four designs were unveiled on September 22, 2008, at the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool Plaza in Washington, D.C. There, U.S. Mint Director Ed Moy was joined by Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission co-chairman Harold Holzer. "These coins are a tribute to one of our greatest Presidents whose legacy has had a lasting impact on our country," Moy said. "He believed all men were created equal, and his life was a model for accomplishing the American dream through honesty, integrity, loyalty, and a lifetime of education."

The Presidential $1 Coin Act of 2005 (Public Law 109-145) authorized the U.S. Mint to issue four different pennies throughout 2009. Beginning with the February release of the first design, each penny design will be issued in roughly three-month intervals.

The four redesigned pennies will be issued by the U.S. Mint in numismatic versions with exactly the same metallic content as the first Lincoln penny issued in 1909: 95% copper, 5% tin and zinc.  These coins will be minted in proof and uncirculated condition. The pennies included with the 2009 Lincoln Coin and Chronicles Set--which sold out after about 30 hours--are also 95% copper.

The 2009 Lincoln pennies intended for circulation will be the same composition as other modern pennies: 97.5% zinc, with only 2.5% copper.

The front (obverse) side of the one cent coin continues to feature the profile of Abraham Lincoln sculpted by Victor David Brenner introduced on the 1909 Lincoln penny. Inscriptions include "IN GOD WE TRUST," "LIBERTY," and "2009."

The back (reverse) side features four designs that depict four periods in the life of Abraham Lincoln:

four 2009 Lincoln penny designs

  • Birth and early childhood in Kentucky
  • Formative years in Indiana
  • Professional life in Illinois
  • Presidency in Washington, D.C.

Inscriptions on the back side of each design include "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA," "E PLURIBUS UNUM," and "ONE CENT."

Log Cabin Design: birth and early childhood in Kentucky

The first coin in the series represents the humble beginnings of Lincolnís life. It shows the model of the log cabin in which Abraham Lincoln was born. This cabin reproduction (the original no longer exists) is at the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Site[http://www.nps.gov/abli/]. The log cabin cent bears the inscriptions "1809" (the year of Lincolnís birth), and "RM" and "JL" (the initials of the designer and sculptor).

Designer: Richard Masters, U.S. Mint Artistic Infusion Program Master Designer
Sculptor: Jim Licaretz, U.S. Mint Sculptor-Engraver
Release Date: February 12, 2009
Ceremony: Hodgenville, KY - About 1,500 attended

The birthplace two-roll set issued by the Mint (one roll of Philadelphia mint and one roll of Denver mint cents) sold out after two weeks: 96,000 units sold.



Rail Splitter Design: formative years in Indiana

The second coin in the series emphasizes Lincolnís drive for education, represented by a young Lincoln taking a break from his rail-splitting duties. It bears the initials of the designís creator: "CLV."

Designer: Charles Vickers
Sculptor: Charles Vickers
Release Date: May 14, 2009
Ceremony: Lincoln State Park, Lincoln City, IN - About 3,000 attended

The formative years two-roll set issued by the Mint (one roll of Philadelphia mint and one roll of Denver mint cents) sold out: 300,000 units sold.


Politician Design: professional life in Illinois

The third coin in the series shows Abraham Lincoln, state politician, standing in front of the Illinois State Capitol. The initials "JI" and "DE" identify the creators of this design.

Designer: Joel Iskowitz
Sculptor: Don Everhart
Release Date: August 13, 2009
Ceremony: Old State Capitol, Springfield, IL - About 3,000 attended

The professional two-roll set issued by the Mint (one roll of Philadelphia mint and one roll of Denver mint cents) sold out: x,000 units sold.


President Design: presidency in Washington, D.C.

The fourth and final coin in the series pictures the dome on the U.S. Capitol as it was (half finished) when Lincoln began his first term as President. "SG" and "JFM" are the initials inscribed on the back.

Designer: Susan Gamble
Sculptor: Joseph Menna
Release Date: November 12, 2009
Ceremony: Ulysses S. Grant Memorial at U.S. Capitol, Washington, D.C. - About 200 attended (it was rainy and DC had alternative indoor coin exchange locations)

The presidency two-roll set issued by the Mint (one roll of Philadelphia mint and one roll of Denver mint cents) had strong sales: 153,427 units ordered in the first three days of availability.

The U.S. Mint also revealed the design of the 2010 penny at the end of the 2009 Lincoln Bicentennial One Cent Coin Program, "the reverse of the penny will feature a design emblematic of President Lincoln's preservation of the United States of America as a single and united country."



Read more about Abraham Lincoln on coins and currency:

Lincoln Penny (2010-Present)
Illinois Centennial Half Dollar (1918)
State Quarter: Illinois (2003)
State Quarter: South Dakota (2006)
Abraham Lincoln Commemorative Silver Dollar (2009)
Abraham Lincoln Presidential Dollar (2010)

$5 Bill

Casino Cash:
$5 Casino Chip (Hard Rock)


Web EverythingLincoln.com

Dear Grandchildren is an Oklahoma history memoir

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