We are excited to release the thirty first coin in the CollecTons Keepers program, an exclusive series only offered by CollecTons. The thirty first coin we present, CollecTons Keepers #31 in Series, features the 1943-D Lincoln Wartime Steel Cent.
Why is the 1943-D Lincoln Wartime Steel Cent a Coin Worth Keeping?
Due to the need for copper and tin in the defense industry leading up to and during World War II, the U.S. Mint began to research how it could limit it's dependence on the metals and meet various conservation goals set by the government. They experimented with a number of materials, including aluminum and plastic but settled on zinc-coated steel as a replacement for the copper and tin used in the penny at the time. The 1943 Steel Cent was cut from a sheet of steel with a thin sheet of zinc on both the bottom and the top. The new coins were magnetic and 13% lighter than the pennies minted from the traditional copper alloy of the time.
The new “Steel Cents” proved to be unpopular with the public. When freshly minted, they were easily confused with dimes. The steel made the pennies magnetic so they could not be used in many of the vending machines of the time (which had magnets in them to detect counterfeit steel slugs). And the zinc coating did not cover the edge of the coins so they began to rust quickly from handling. Within a year, the Mint had developed a process which used salvaged brass shell casings (from ammunition) to produce an alloy that was close to the previous composition. This composition was used from 1944-1946. It was slightly darker in color but otherwise proved satisfactory.
The Steel Cent was only produced for a single year, 1943. It is the only circulating coin issued by the United States Mint that can be picked up with a magnet. It is also the only coin issued by the U.S. Mint for circulation that does not contain any copper.
Designer: Victor David Brenner
Composition: 99% steel with a thin layer of zinc
Weight: 2.7 grams
What makes the Collectons Keepers program special?
Here at CollecTons, we work hard researching coins that should be part of every collection. Our goal is to utilize our knowledge in the numismatic industry to select coins worthy of being in everyone's collection! Therefore, the CollecTons Keepers program will only feature those Coins Worth Keeping.
Each coin is hand selected and given to ANACS (America's Oldest Grading Service) for grading and authentication. The coins are then sealed in an ANACS certified proprietary slab holder for long-term storage, with our limited edition label marking it a CollecTons Keeper.