The U.S. Mint unveiled the 2010 Lincoln penny design during a Springfield, Illinois ceremony on February 11. The reverse design features a Union shield emblematic of President Lincoln’s preservation of the United States. The shield includes 13 vertical stripes representing the original 13 states joined together as a united country. The stripes are capped by the heading “E Pluribus Unum” (Out of Many, One) which is inscribed across the top of the shield.
The shield dates back to the 1700’s, and was used widely during the Civil War.
The 2010 Lincoln penny design evolved from the Presidential $1 Coin Act of 2005 which required a new penny design for regular use be developed for use in 2010 and beyond, symbolizing President Lincoln’s preservation of the United States as “a single and united country.”
Initially, 18 designs were submitted to the Commission of Fine Arts and the Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee. Both organizations submitted their recommended designs to US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geitner, who selected the Union shield design. Lyndall Bass, an associate designer with the US Mint created the design, and Joseph F. Menna was the design sculptor.
The Union shield design replaces four 2009 designs depicting different aspects of President Lincoln’s life and the 1950 to 2000 Lincoln Memorial design.
For more information on the new 2010 penny, please click here to visit the US Mint website