Lincoln Cents are the longest running series of US coins. They have been minted from 1909 to today. The designer was Victor David Brenner. Augustus St Gaudens was asked to design all of the coin denominations from the cent to the $20 gold piece, but he died after he had designed the $20- and $10-dollar gold pieces, so Teddy Roosevelt asked Victor David Brenner to design the Lincoln Cent. The Lincoln Cent has a bust of Abraham Lincoln, and a reverse of wheat ears. On the reverse he put his initials "VDB" at the bottom. People complained about it, so the mint removed the initials.
Victor David Brenner liked designing the cent, so he became a designer for the mint. He joined the competition to redesign the Morgan Dollar. He went to Paris to study paintings and then came back to America and started designing in New York. He joined the American Numismatic Association (ANA) and the New York Coin Club.
In 1943 copper was scarce and needed for the war, so they changed the metal to steel, but just for one year. In 1959, the wheat ears reverse was removed and they put the Lincoln Memorial on the reverse. Then after that, in 1982 they changed the metal composition from copper to copper-coated-zinc. The zinc cents in 1982 are harder to find. In 2009, they put four designs on the Lincoln Cent. The designs celebrate his birth, his formative years, his professional life, and his presidency. After the 2009 Lincoln Bicentennial designs, the reverse changed again, now to the Protecting the Union reverse. The reverse has a shield on it. In 2026 they are going to change the cent design again, but it will not be issued for circulation that year. I do not know what the design will be.
They key date of the Lincoln Cents series is the 1909-S VDB. It is worth $600 is G4 condition. The other key dates are the 1909-S, 1914-D and the 1931-S. There are some varieties that are expensive too, such as the 1922 No D. That year the Philadelphia Mint did not produce Lincoln Cents. The 1922 No D has a die clash and the D was polished off with the clash. Another famous variety is the 1955 Double Die. This variety is famous because the doubling is major. There also is a 1958 Double Die, and others including the 1969-S and 1971-S Proof, but they are not as well known as the 1955 Double Die. There are some other errors such as the 1943 copper planchet and the 1944 steel planchet errors.
I am collecting the Lincoln Cent because I like the history and I like the coins. I find my cents by going to the bank and getting coin rolls. The rolls mostly have the Lincoln Memorial and Shield reverses, but I sometimes find Wheat Cents.