How Much Is This 1943 Steel Wheat Penny Worth?
I went into On The Go in Mattapoisett yesterday to grab a sandwich wrap for my wife. After paying cash for the sandwich, the owner, Corey Lorenco, handed me the weirdest looking penny I've ever seen.
The coin felt more like a dime than a penny. The texture and weight were much different than any penny I've ever held. There was something "off" about it.
We talked about it with another customer that was waiting in line. The penny was from 1943. I'm no coin expert at all, but apparently, during World War II, the United States stopped using copper to make pennies. Instead, the treasury used steel to manufacture the pennies.
On The Go had a whole sleeve of these steel pennies from 1943. Corey said that the bank had given them to him when he asked for some change for his cash register.
We decided to Google "1943 steel penny" and see what we could find. I'm not going to lie, we all got a little excited when we say eBay listings for as high as $5,000-$10,000 for EACH penny.
I knew that there was no way they could be worth that much, but eagerly accepted the unusual coin nonetheless.
I was telling the story on the air this morning when I got a call from a coin collector.
He says he has a number of these pennies. While rare, he says they are not worth anywhere near $5,000. The caller says they are worth right around $1 apiece.
So, we're not booking any trips to Vegas with our rare pennies, but it's not a bad investment. The 100 pennies On The Go bought from the bank for $1 is worth $100.
As of yesterday afternoon, Corey was still giving them out as regular change.