If I had another collecting life, I would spend it collecting large cents.
The large cent collector is special. He/she is a true numismatist, not afraid to go against the crowd, collecting these coins because the coins are lovely, quaint, historical, varied. One lifetime may not be enough to assemble a great collection. A complete collection has never been achieved, and probably never will be. The large cent specialist may even discover the next scarce variety.
A large cent specialist needs to appreciate history. He/she loves research, poring over old reference books and auction catalogs, absorbing every detail, always learning something new about 200 year old coins.
An eye for detail is required. A glance at the Red Book shows the many varieties available, from overdates to senseless fractions to branches, berries, Silly Heads and Booby Heads. Don't forget the edge devices.
Collectors who want only super-duper Mint State coins would not fit. Many large cents are well worn. They went out and did the job they were created to do. Sometimes the best known specimen is graded VG or less. The copper can show different colors, from attractive to ordinary to unnatural to ugly.
An argument can be made that large cents are the coins that began coin collecting. When the large cent was discontinued in 1857, people tried to collect one of each year. The 1799 was rarely found. This was the birth year of a collector, who learned of the rarity of this coin when he searched for one.
Large cents are what numismatics is all about.