By Elizabeth Rice
Hello. I am an 1861 Indian Head Penny, and believe it or not, I actually belonged to President Abraham Lincoln. Yes, I know you might not believe me, but it is true. I promise you. I jangled around in Honest Abe’s pants pockets for a couple of years, and sometimes he would rub me for good fortune, as I was his lucky penny.
day as I tumbled in Abe’s pockets while he was walking the streets of
Washington D.C. visiting with the people, he passed me on as a token of good
will to a bright eyed, brown haired, young girl named Jane. As Jane carried me
to her house, I was so happy to enjoy all the new scenery, including the
beautiful cherry blossom trees with their emerging blooms of springtime. Upon
arriving at Jane’s log cabin home, she shared me with her parents, her younger
brother, and her older sister. I was chosen to be her family’s most valuable
treasure. Her family put me in a tiny, wooden box to be kept on the mantle.
From time to time, I would see daylight when Jane shared me with family and friends.
Eventually, Jane passed me on to her daughter, and I was eventually given to
her daughter’s grandchild, Elizabeth.
Elizabeth, a young numismatist, took care of me in a whole new way. She loved taking me to her fourth grade class at school in Louisville, Kentucky for show and tell. I enjoyed being looked at by the students and the tender feeling of their fingers sliding along my smooth, brown, worn edges. I always heard, “Oohs” and “Aahs” as the kids passed me around. All the children made me feel so special by recognizing me as an important part of history. I was even brought by Elizabeth to old Abe’s birthplace in Hodgenville, Kentucky one day during a school field trip. Now, Elizabeth shares me with the world. As she travels from coin show to coin show, the bright display lights at each event warm my insides.