Americans for Common Cents (ACC) conducts research and provides information to Congress and the Executive Branch on the value and benefits of the penny.

Four New Penny Designs Honor Lincoln Bicentennial

Press Release
Contact: Mark Weller
(202) 408-3933
For Immediate Release:  September 22, 2008

Washington, DC – It is fitting and proper, as President Lincoln would say, to honor the 200th anniversary of Lincoln’s birth with four new penny designs.  Authorized by legislation enacted in late 2005, the new designs depict different aspects of our 16th President’s life on the reverse or “tails” side of the coin. 

  • Birth and early childhood in Kentucky (1809-1816) – shows a simple log cabin and represents Lincoln’s modest roots.
  • Formative years in Indiana (1816-1830) – depicts a young Lincoln reading while taking a break from work as a rail splitter in Indiana.
  • Professional life in Illinois (1830-1861) – features Lincoln as a young professional in front of the Illinois state capitol building in Springfield.
  • Presidency in Washington, D.C. (1861-1865) – depicts the half-finished Capitol dome.  Lincoln ordered work on the Capitol dome to continue during the Civil War as a symbol that the union would be preserved.

The new pennies will be released into circulation in February 2009, beginning with the Kentucky penny.  Every three months in 2009, the U.S. Mint will circulate new coins including the Indiana penny in May, the Illinois penny in August, and the Presidential coin in November.

“President Lincoln’s political and cultural significance to our nation is extraordinary,” said Mark Weller, the Executive Director of Americans for Common Cents.  “Lincoln’s image has graced our coin since 1909, the 100th anniversary of his birth, and its important to pay tribute to his lasting impact on our country, ” Weller continued.  The Lincoln penny was a major departure from previous coinage since it depicted a real historical figure for the first time. 

The four penny designs can be viewed here

Mark W. Weller, Executive Director
Americans for Common Cents

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