2010 Lincoln Penny Design

Today, the United States Mint revealed the reverse design that will be used for the 2010 Lincoln Cent. Design candidates had been released in May 2009, but the final decision was not known until today. In addition to 2010, the new design is expected to be used for the reverse of the Lincoln Cent for the foreseeable future.

The design features a union shield with a scroll draped across bearing the denomination “One Cent”. The shield features thirteen vertical stripes and a horizontal bar with the motto “E Pluribus Unum.” This is intended to represent the thirteen original states joined in one compact union. The union shield was used during the Civil War and appears in the halls of the U.S. Capitol Building on frescoes by Constantino Brumidi, the artist at the Capitol during Lincoln’s presidency. The reverse was designed by US Mint Artistic Infusion Program Associate Designer Lyndall Bass and sculpted by Joseph Menna.

The announcement was made at today’s fourth 2009 Lincoln Cent launch ceremony held in Washington, DC and also by press release. Under Public Law 109-145, the reverse of one cent coins issued after December 31, 2009, shall feature an image “emblematic of President Lincoln’s preservation of the United States of America as a single, united country.”

The Citizen’s Coinage Advisory Committee had favored this design after reviewing design candidates provided by the US Mint. The Commission of Fine Arts had initially favored a design featuring a bundle of thirteen wheat stalks, but switched their recommendation to a 34 star flag after the wheat stalk design was removed from consideration.

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  1. Anonymous says

    Dumb. What a disgrace to the history of artistry on our coinage. This design is so simple, both in thought and artistic design, that it's almost like they made a decision without caring. The flag design was very simple too, yes, but at least it had thought behind it.

    This is like the "new" reverse of the nickel, where all they did was enhance the relief. It's like nobody at the Mint's exec levels wants to put in a day's work. Even the new quarters program basically relies on the states to do the thinking and designing for the next eleven years, and the $1 program just takes the official White House portraits so nobody has to make a real decision on those either.

    After 200 years of heraldic beauty and thoughtful emblematics, our coin design process has now been reduced to "How little effort can we exert and still call something 'new and exciting'?"

  2. Anonymous says

    I for one will applaud the Mint . Seems like they finally made a second good decision this year.First one of course was putting together the LC&C Set..

  3. Anonymous says

    I got it , if we just do away with the cent/penny,then,we won't have to worry about their inability & incompetence! When is Mr. Moy out of there anyway?

  4. astroguy says

    Of the two finalists, this was the lesser evil, in my opinion, in blandness. It's boring, unimaginative, plain, etc., but at least it has some curves in it and is slightly reminiscent of the coinage at the time.

  5. Anonymous says

    Both of the final designs stunk like a dead skunk… great… now, we'll have to look at this stupid design for atleast 50 years. Most of us won't live long enough to see if they ever come up with a decent design for the penny again!

  6. Anonymous says

    They should just make an Ultra High Relief Penny starting in 2010. That would be more interesting.

  7. Anonymous says

    Instead of a design which institutionalizes the worship of statism, how about one that comemorates and honors Liberty? But, of course, it is far too late to be making these kinds of suggestions.

  8. Anonymous says

    I agree that this one is the better of the two; but I wasn't crazy about either. Maybe it will look better in it's clad form, fresh of the press. Clad coins are obnoxious. They make me feel like I'm getting one of those cheapy gold buffalo imitations you see on ebay all the time. Yuck-o!!

  9. Anonymous says

    Much better than that crummy flag design! The shield looks awesome!

    However, I would like to see the mint get rid of all these dead presidents and bring back liberty. Now that would be a step forward.

  10. Anonymous says

    To commenter 9:09: I wouldn't look for any designs that promote libery on any redesigned coins.

  11. Anonymous says

    Order number: 3338xxxx
    5 units backordered
    Expected to ship on 11/27/2009.

  12. Anonymous says

    To commenter 8:58
    OopS I meant Commenter 9:09

    It was the Illuminati that actually designed it!

  13. Zyll says

    I couldn't be happier, considering the flag they were going to use. It is very plain, but at least this is a step in the right direction.

  14. Anonymous says

    To anonymous @ 9:17,

    I HATE those stupid buffalo copy coins for sale on eBay all the time. It's so bad, I have to put the "-copy" in my search for buffalo gold so they won't show up!

    Those stupid things should be OUTLAWED!

  15. Anonymous says

    Everyone understands the symbolism behind the flag, but let's face it, it would have been extremely ugly on a coin the size of our cent. I'm very interested in Civil War era history, so the symbolism wasn't lost on me, but that doesn't change the fact that the flag was hideous. I applaud the mint for their decision. It's not the best design possible, but it's the best of the 17 possibilities and it's certainly a step in the right direction.

  16. Anonymous says

    I thought that if a flag was going to be used, it should have been a 36 star flag since that is how many stars the flag had at war's end. I think a 34 star flag had no meaning. I do believe that emphasizing "From Many, One" is emblematic of the preservation of The Union.

    My Presidency cent roll order (subscription) says it is expected to ship 11/10/2009 (yep, two days before it was issued, the day they entered the order). Way to go mint!

  17. Anonymous says

    I love it. It's classic and beautiful, not plain and unimaginative. With all the griping about the Mint, I think they did good here.

    Will be happy to look at this design for however long it stays

  18. Anonymous says

    I think alot of the people complaining don't realize what it takes to actually create a usable, realistic design; especially on a coin surface as small as the cent. They did a great job. Artistic, yet filled with meaning. Just wait till you see the actual coin, would be willing to bet alot of you will change your mind

  19. Anonymous says

    Just in case anyone is interested.

    The release of the 2009 Presidency penny in DC was wet wet wet, that includes the programs and everyone else except the (In group) under a four sided tent. Most of the crowd went to the Mint shop in Union Station (they sold out a little after 12). At this occasion everything was neat and tidy inside but windy and wet outside.

  20. Anonymous says

    The new reverse design may be significant and meaningful, but it sure isn't beautiful or artistic.

    Can you imagine the reverse of this coin ever being used as the reverse of a silver bullion or gold bullion coin? Or even on the back of a commemorative coin?

    Thanks to the US Mint for using the Walking Liberty, St. Gaudens, and Buffalo coin designs on their bullion coins….

  21. Anonymous says

    Well this means the old Lincoln memorial obverse is now a finished series as of 2008. We had the wheat cents, the memorial cents, the 2009 Lincoln cents, and now we begin a Shield cent series starting in 2010. Not too shabby to see 4 different penny series in my lifetime so far. Doubt I'll see the shield finish, but hey, I'll take it.

    It's all progress in my book. I started to write with a nib pen and inkwell, went to rubber bladder fountain pens, then ball point pens, then a type writer, now a keyboard. LOL. What a country! ~ Grandpa.

  22. coinman says

    Just wanted to ask a question, all the money the mint is making on pennies with their jacked up prices where is it going. Face it they are making a mint (LOL) off a dollars worth of pennies for 8.95.

  23. Anonymous says

    I would support the shield more if it looked more classic and less art deco. In fact, in such a case, it might actually be really, really good.

    Overall, I also wish that we could go back to the "liberty" thematics over the statism/government thematics. But, as I have always believed, our money really does reflect our society, and I think it's clear that our society is allowing more statism and less liberty in our lives as time goes on. So maybe this is appropriate. Whatever; we can't change the coin now.

  24. Anonymous says

    They make be making a profit on the pennies but they are losing on the $1 coin direct ship program. In the end they turn a profit which is quite unique for a govt agency.

  25. Zyll says

    Yes, I do understand the symbolism of the flag but it might, if I may, be too subtle for the public. This design may be lacking artistically, but it fits right in with the stylistic direction the mint has been going since Sacagawea.

    For the record, I would love a return to liberty themes as well.

  26. Anonymous says

    LOL…there may just be a silver lining to the new obverse. Study it a few moments……..

    It's rather plain to see that the whole design is fraught with opportunity to create at minimum 8 "errors" during every day production. That would be in keeping with the Mint's current shoddy operation.

    Perhaps, perhaps that is indeed the plan. When the peasants are starved for food, toss 'em a crumb or two. They'll shut up.

  27. Anonymous says

    The mint does not loose any money on the golden dollar direct ship program. The coins cost way less than a dollar to produce and with a 250 coin minumum order, even with no shipping charge they are still making a massive profit. They don't have to buy the dollars that they sell at face value.

  28. Anonymous says

    Ewww, yech!

    The only way the Mint will redeem itself is by choosing one of the allegorical designs for the 2009 plat proof. Please don't give us the faces or the interlocked hands.

  29. Anonymous says

    This is a coin that is definitely better off with a simpler design – though I personally would have preferred a clean wheat motif.

  30. Anonymous says

    Kind of bland. I liked 12 , 14 and 4 better. If they had to go with the shield they should have used #14.

  31. Anonymous says

    Maybe the Mint will do all of us penny collectors a big favor and chop the Presidency (LPT4) mintage off at the knees and mass produce the 2010 design.

  32. Anonymous says

    The new reverse looks modern and the obverse looks vintage. I think the obverse needs to be tweeked a bit.

  33. Orcutt says

    I doubt many busy citizens look into the pre-iconographic material of the shield but if they did I’m sure they would find it plenty interesting.

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