Jade Small
Jade Small
February 21, 2024 ·  4 min read

These valuable pennies are worth up to $200,000—and they might be in your pocket

Many of us have memories of our grandparents collecting the most random things. For some, it was antique china tea sets; for others, it was coins from all over and various timelines. The coin collectors would jump at the chance to show their most valuable collectibles to anyone looking. Most know exactly what their coins are worth, but few may have realized they are sitting on goldmines with the coins they deemed invaluable. We all know a penny is one cent, but some valuable pennies could change your life.

You might have some valuable pennies lurking somewhere

A few variations of valuable pennies were made, but most are extremely rare. If you are lucky enough to stumble across one, you might have hit a goldmine. Remember, these pennies would have circulated through many wallets and purses. So, anyone could be lucky enough to find one. It just takes a little awareness and possibly some fine attention to detail. So, for your benefit, we have a list of seven different valuable pennies to look out for. You never know; you might be sitting on a fortune!

1. 1969-S Doubled Die Obverse

An expert in coins for The Spruce Crafts, James Bucki, explained that this coin is famous because the obverse, the front of the coin, has a misprint. This was done because the hub imprinted a double image to the stamp in the minting process.

The Mint only realized their error after 1000 or so of these coins were made. Now, they are valued at an estimated $75,000. According to Coin World, one was sold at $35,000 last year.

1969-S Doubled Die Obverse
Image credit: Heritage Auctions

2.1972 Doubled Die Obverse valuable pennies

This one is similar to the 1969-S double-die obverse penny. In short, there is a double print in the word “LIBERTY” and “IN GOD WE TRUST.” Additionally, the date is doubled. There were about 250,000 of these coins made, making them a little more common than some of these valuable pennies. James Bucki says they are valued between $100 and $500, depending on the coin’s condition.

1972 Doubled Die Obverse valuable pennies
Image credit: Heritage auctions

3.1999 Wide AM Reverse

Then, there is the 1999 wide AM reverse penny. This one is different from the 1992 close AM reverse penny in that the print showed a small gap between the “A” and the “M” of the world “America.” James Bucki explained what was meant to happen: “The regular run was supposed to have the letters ‘A’ and ‘M’ in ‘AMERICA’ almost touching, and the special proof coins were supposed to have a wider space between those letters.”

1999 Wide AM Reverse
Image credit: Heritage auctions

4. 1943 Bronze Lincoln valuable pennies

In short, the 1943 Bronze Lincoln penny is “the most famous error coin in American numismatics.” David Stone said: “The most valuable Lincoln cent sold privately in 2010 for $1.7 million.” There are only 15 to 20 coins that collectors have made known to the public, but there is a chance there are a few more unaccounted for.

In 1947, a man named Don Lutes received one of these valuable pennies in 1947 as a change from his school lunch. He knew he had found a valuable coin as he was a coin collector. In other words, he knew what to look out for. Stone said: “A nice circulated example, like Lutes’ coin, could sell for around $150,000 to $200,000. Heritage auctioned a similar one — in slightly lower grade — for $186,000 earlier this month.” So, if you find one in your grandmother’s purse, let her know she might make some good money.

Read: Metal detectorist discovers medieval wedding ring worth an estimated $47,000

1943 Bronze Lincoln valuable pennies
Image credit: Heritage Auctions

5. 1992 Close AM Reverse

Then, we have the 1992 close AM reverse. David Stone pointed out that pennies made this year has a prominent gap between the “A” and the “M” of “America. But, these valuable pennies show the letters are clearly touching. James Bucki estimates these coins are worth about $20,000 if it is new and in Mint condition. However, you might still get $2,000 to $3,000 at an auction.

Image credit: Heritage auctions

6. 1995 Doubled Die Obverse

Here we have the Doubled Die Obverse. This coin requires fine attention to detail to spot the double printing. So, if you look closely, you’ll see the letter “B” in the word “LIBERTY” is double-printed. Additionally, you’ll see the double printing on the date. Bucki says, “these are one of the easiest valuable pennies to find. I’ve found one myself.” If you managed to find one, you might get about $45 for it.

1995 Doubled Die Obverse valuable pennies
Image credit: Heritage auctions

7. 1983 Double Die Reverse

Lastly, we have the 1983 double-die reverse penny. These valuable pennies are doubled on the back, or the reverse, of the coin. In short, you can identify this coin by doubling on the printing of the ‘ONE CENT’ and ‘E PLURIBUS UNUM.’ About 250,000 of these pennies were produced and sent out into the world. If you sold a new one in mint condition, you could get up to $200. However, if it is used, you might only get $75.

1983 Double Die Reverse
Image credit: Heritage auctions

Keep Reading: 30 Rare Photos Reveal The Unseen Side Of Things, And It Will Change The Way You See The World


  1. These valuable pennies are worth up to $200,000—and they might be in your pocket.CNBC. Minda Zetlin. July 18 2019.
  2. Heads Up: You Could Be the Owner of Valuable Pennies Worth $200,000.” House Beautiful. Elizabeth Golino. July 19, 2019.