Assessing the Value and Historical Significance of a 1957 D Wheat Penny


Collectors seeking to determine the value of a 1957-D wheat penny must consider several factors, including the coin’s condition and other characteristics. Prices for these coins can vary significantly, making it important to understand the nuances of the market before making a purchase or sale. This article provides useful information about 1957-D wheat pennies to help collectors make informed decisions.

1. History of the Lincoln Cent

In 1909, to commemorate the 100th anniversary of President Abraham Lincoln’s birth, the United States Mint released the first Lincoln Wheat Penny.

This redesign of the U.S. Mint system was commissioned by President Theodore Roosevelt and designed by Victor David Brenner.


Brenner was tasked with creating a new design for the nation’s coin, while Augustus Saint-Gaudens was asked to redesign the ten-dollar and twenty-dollar gold coins. Bella Lyon Pratt was responsible for the $2.50 and $5 gold penny innovation.

At the behest of President Roosevelt, Brenner created a design for the nation’s coinage featuring a portrait of President Lincoln from the shoulder up, inspired by a plaque in his studio. This became the basis for Brenner’s first design. Engraved on the top of 1957 D pennies are the words “IN GOD WE TRUST,” with “LIBERTY” on the left side and the date and mint mark on the right.

Etched onto the reverse of the coin are two wheat stalks facing each other, with the initials of its designer, V.D.B., inscribed at the bottom. This design was met with opposition from other coin designers, leading to the mints being modified and the initials removed.

2. Grading Considerations

Coins from the Lincoln Memorial design, which replaced the wheat penny in 1959, can often be found in very good or even excellent condition due to gradual separation from circulation and preservation. Collectors usually keep them in jars or cans. Poor storage conditions can affect the quality of the 1957 D penny. Therefore, you should be careful when buying 1957 D wheat penny.


The circulation of pennies has been significantly impacted by the collection of coins, with an estimated total of over one billion cents removed from circulation. Despite this, these coins are still highly valued for their integrity.

3. Value of a 1957-D Wheat Penny

Collectors may acquire non-circulating coins from mint red up to MS-66 Red. The average uncirculated coin (MS-63) typically costs around seventy-five cents. The highest grade Lincoln 1957-D certified by a third-party certification service is the MS-67 + Red; this 1957 D nickel sold for $2,640 at a Stack’s Bowers auction in August 2018.


Uncirculated coins can be purchased for approximately 10-15 cents. To be classified as MS-66 or higher, a third-party certification from a reputable source, such as NGC or PCGS, is required.

Grade Brown Red % Brown Red
G4 $0.04
VG8 $0.04
F12 $0.05
VF20 $0.06
XF40 $0.08
AU50 $0.10
AU53 $0.12
AU55 $0.13
AU58 $0.15
MS60 $0.25
MS61 $0.30
MS62 $0.60
MS63 $0.75
MS64 $1.00 $2.50 $7.00
MS65 $2.50 $7.00 $11.00
MS66 $12.00 $20.00 $22.00
MS67 $130.00 $225.00 $350.00
MS68 $2,500.00 $3,000.00 $4,000.00

4. Top 10 Auction Records of the 1957-D Wheat Penny

Analysis of 1957 D Penny Auction Records from Bowers & Merena, David Lawrence Rare Coins, eBay, Great Collections, Heritage Auctions, and Stack’s Bowers :

  • $4,945 Auctioned in November 2007; David Lawrence Rare Coins; MS67(PCGS)
  • $4,428 Auctioned in August 2007; Bowers & Merena; MS67(PCGS)
  • $4,370 Auctioned in July 2008; Stack’s; MS64(PCGS)
  • $4,313 Auctioned in May 2005; Heritage Auctions; MS67(PCGS)
  • $4,025 Auctioned in January 2009; Heritage Auctions; MS67(PCGS)
  • $3,995 Auctioned in June 2015; Heritage Auctions; MS67+(PCGS)
  • $3,910 Auctioned in December 2005; Bowers & Merena; MS67(PCGS)
  • $3,738 Auctioned in April 2010; Heritage Auctions; MS67(PCGS)
  • $3,738 Auctioned in December 2008; Heritage Auctions; MS67(PCGS)
  • $3,738 Auctioned in April 2006; Heritage Auctions; MS67(PCGS)


5. Varieties of the 1957-D Wheat Penny

Research indicates that the Denver mint produced over one billion 1957 D coins. This has led collectors to anticipate the discovery of additional dies. Nevertheless, John Wexler, Kevin Flynn and Billy G. Crawford, experts in the field, have only identified four distinct dies.

  • Doubled Die Obverse; Catalog ID is CDDO-001
  • Doubled Die Obverse; Catalog ID is CDDO-002
  • Doubled Die Obverse; Catalog ID is CDDO-003
  • Doubled Die Obverse; Catalog ID is CDDO-004

Continuing research is being conducted to uncover additional dies for the Lincoln 1957 D. To stay abreast of the latest discoveries, individuals should monitor updates on the coin.


The 1957 D wheat penny is a valuable coin, however, its worth can vary depending on its condition. It is important to be aware of this when purchasing coins, as it is possible to be deceived into buying a low-grade penny. Further information on other valuable coins will be provided in upcoming articles.

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