The Indian Head cent, or Indian Head Penny, was designed by James Barton Longacre and struck from 1859 until 1909. It was minted in both Philadelphia and San Francisco.

The coin featured the head of Lady Liberty, facing left and wearing a Native American headdress with "Liberty" written across the band. The words "United States of America" encircle her. Popular legend has it that Longacre used his young daughter as inspiration for the design, but no proof exists to confirm nor deny this rumor.

For the first year it was struck, the reverse of the Indian Head cent depicted the denomination – the words "one cent" – inside a laurel wreath. The following year, the laurel wreath became an oak wreath, thought to symbolize authority. Arrows were added to the bottom an a heraldic shield was added at the top.

The Indian Head penny was produced using the same material as the Flying Eagle cent – a mixture of copper and nickel – until 1864, when the nickel was removed, changing the coin’s color.

Although there are slight variations in design, the images remained virtually the same (excluding the obvious change on the reverse after the first year) until the coin ceased production in 1909.


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Recent News: Indian Head Cents

Source: Google News

Dates not only definitive for value | Coin World
Coin World, April 28th

The 1877 Indian Head cent, in contrast, is about one-third the size. The coin shows a not very Indian-looking Native American on the obverse and an oak wreath on the reverse. The 1804 silver dollar is a fabled American rarity, but if you're not picky...Read more

10-year-old finds treasure under Maine's surface
Biddeford Journal Tribune, April 26th

Desrosiers has found an 1812 1-cent piece, a 1935 buffalo nickel, an 1882 Indian head penny and more. He can tell you that U.S. silver half-dollars made from 1964 to 1970 are 40 percent silver, while those made prior to 1964 are 90 percent silver. And...Read more

Collecting on a Budget: Affordable Indian Head Cents
Coin Update News, April 25th

We have discussed the Lincoln Wheat cent series in an earlier article, and now we will go further back in time to the Indian Head cent series, which was produced from 1859 to 1909. These coins played an important role in American commerce over a 50...Read more

Don't Get Too Excited About $20 Bill Change
NDSU The Spectrum, April 25th

Females are not unknown on American currency, from the Walking Liberty half dollar to the Peace dollar to the Indian Head cent, all depictions of Lady Liberty. An argument could say Lady Liberty is not a historical figure like Tubman or Anthony. True ...Read more

Currency history, values to be explored at North Hills Coin Club coin fair
Tribune-Review, April 17th

It's not how old the coin is, it's how many were made in any particular year,” he explained. North Hills Coin Club President Tom Franczyk, 68, of Ross bought an 1871 Indian Head cent on eBay that he could have turned around and sold at a 550 percent...Read more

Ho! Ho! And a Bottle of Rum! A few short tales of the bottle
Valley morning Star, March 31st

The two spent the afternoon exploring the area, finding several branding irons, the remains of a large fire-pit, clay pipes, an old ivory comb, an Indian head penny dated 1871, and a worn spur, with its rowels rusted together. All booty was dumped into...Read more

Counterfeit Coin Detection – 1908-S Indian Head Cent
CoinWeek (blog), January 13th

The 1908-S cent had the third-lowest mintage in the Indian Head cent series with 1,115,000 pieces struck. The first of only two San Francisco Mint Indian Head cents, the 1908-S can trade for more than $100 in average circulated grades according to the...Read more

1877 Indian Head cent: Market Analysis | Coin World
Coin World, January 4th

The regular issue 1877 Indian Head cent is a key to the series due to its low mintage and survival rate. The Proof issue of this date has long been prized owing to the rarity of Mint State examples, with some collectors preferring a Proof example over...Read more