1959 white penny

Discussion in 'Error Coins' started by JMazzella, Sep 22, 2004.

  1. JMazzella

    JMazzella New Member

    1959 silver penny (not wheat)???

    I have a bunch of old coins and with the old pennys i found a 1959 penny. Instead of the usual copper color it is silver. I going to attach some pictures. Anybody know if it is worth anything?

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    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator

    Howdy JMazzella - Welcome to the Forum !!

    I'm afraid the pics are way to small to able to help you any. Can you enlarge them ?
  4. JMazzella

    JMazzella New Member

    Thanks Im glad to find the forum. My father had a whole bunch of old coins but I was trying to look this up and can't find anything like it. Im rescanning it now and i will try to enlarge it. but i can tell you it silver colored instead of copper.

    GDJMSP Numismatist Moderator

    OK - while you're working on the pics - here's another little test you can do that may help identify the coin or tell what has happened to it.

    Find a popsicle stick and place it across a pencil so that the popsicle stick is balanced. Now find another cent - it has to be dated before 1982. Place this white cent on one end of the popsicle stick and the other cent on the other end. Which one is heavier ?
  6. jtwax

    jtwax Senior Member

    Your cent appears to be of its full diamater. Since 1959 cents were made of copper, not copper coated zinc, your cent was most likely plated with something, hence post Mint alteration.
  7. imccoins

    imccoins New Member

    silver plated it could be, but also with the help of an enlarged photo will greatly help us distinguish it.
  8. Lonthu

    Lonthu New Member

    I also have a 1959 "silver" penny that was in my fathers collection.
  9. Lonthu

    Lonthu New Member

    Upon further examination, this penny is definitely post mint plated. Front and back are silver but the rim is not, it is copper, except that there is a very slight "bead" of silver at the very top of the coin rim; as might be expected if it were attached to a chain or other support. I suspect that this penny was part of a pendant or a bracelet (I saw a 1959 silver penny bracelet advertised on epier http://www.epier.com/BiddingForm.asp?232830 ).
  10. death52502

    death52502 New Member

    Let us talk about the white penny please. After looking at it thinking it was struck in the wrong metal. Which can a does happen, I found that they are magnetic. They have the same grab to a magnet that a 1943 penny has. I would say that this is not a post mint thing becase they are only found on 1959 pennies that do not have a mint letter. Possible testing pieces or wrong metal mixture. I am trying to research these pennies but hopefully there is something about them.
  11. Treashunt

    Treashunt The Other Frank


    As afr as the above, if it were struck on a dime planchet, which is the only thing possible, it would not fill all the devices that clearly, since the planchet is smaller.
  12. huntsman53

    huntsman53 Supporter**

    Coating cents with Mercury was fairly popular back in the 50's and 60's! It made them bright and shiny and awfully purdy (to some folks that is!)!

  13. tommypski

    tommypski Coinaholic

    here is a 1954 cent, plated with something or other. The thin coat of metal was enough to make it stick to this magnetic bracelet

    Attached Files:

  14. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    Your post seems to imply that you also own a "white" 1959 cent that is strongly attracted to a magnet. Now 99.99% of all of the "white" cents that are reported turn out to be merely a plated cent. If the plating is a heavy one of nickel or chrome it can be weakly attracted to a magnet but not strongly attracted. Most of the coins that are NOT just plated are cents struck on dime planchets. These are lighter in weight and are also not magnetic.

    Very rarely you will find a cent that is struck on a foreign planchet. (The Mint struck coins or made planchets for foreign countries until 1984, and for Iceland in 2000) If this is the case then it will probably also be light weight. It is possible to go over a list of possible coins/planchets if we know the weight. Still something like that is just a random occurance not something special to 1959. And it would not be an experimental alloy test as the mint had no reason to conduct such experiments in 1959.
  15. theknibbs

    theknibbs New Member

    I have this same penny. 1959 no mint mark. Just weighed it today. Its 3.5 grams. And magnetic. If you guys have found any info id appreciate it. Hope it helps.
  16. desertgem

    desertgem MODERATOR Senior Errer Collecktor Moderator

    The cent weight is given for 95% copper is 3.11 grams, steel 1943 was 2.7 grams, zinc core 2.5, all +/- max of about .1gram

    The dime weight ( 90% silver) is 2.50 grams and clad dimes 2.27 grams

    A cent weighing 3.5 grams and being magnetic has to be plated with steel or other magnetic composition.
  17. chip

    chip Novice collector

    I doubt that plating would add .4 grams to a cent, maybe 4 milligrams but that would be pretty heavily plated
  18. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    You say magnetic, Strongly magnetic or weakly magnetic? And does it have the same magnetic attraction all over or is it stronger around the rims?
  19. theknibbs

    theknibbs New Member

    I thght the samething, that it was just the bezel. But it is relatively strong, the same on the edge as it is dead center.

    Also as im doing research, all of these "white" pennies from 1959 all have one thing in common, no mint mark. Coincidence??
  20. theknibbs

    theknibbs New Member

    According to something i just read 1959 was the first yr w the memorial in the back, they were all made in philly and none have a mint mark....
  21. Alicia1988

    Alicia1988 New Member

    I just found one at work. No mint mark 1959 HELP on what it is lol
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