The Nickel and Dimed Life: Debunking the ‘Value’ of the 1956 D Penny

Are you one of those people who believe that the 1956 D penny can make you rich? Well, think again! Despite what you might have heard on the internet, there is little to no truth to the rumors that this particular penny is worth thousands of dollars. In this article, we will debunk the myth of the ‘Value’ of the 1956 D penny.

The Seed Keyword: Debunking

Let’s start by defining the word ‘debunking.’ To ‘debunk’ is to expose the falseness or the hollowness of a myth, an idea, or a belief. In this case, we are going to debunk the myth that the 1956 D penny is worth a lot of money.

The Most Frequently Described 1956 D Penny Myth

The myth of the 1956 D penny started back in the 1990s, when some collectors began to spread the rumor that this particular penny was rare and could fetch up to $10,000. Since then, many people have come to believe that the 1956 D penny is worth a fortune, and some even claim to have found one in their change.

Personally, I would love nothing more than to find a 1956 D penny in my change, but the reality is that they are not as rare as some collectors would like us to believe. In fact, millions of these pennies were minted in 1956, and they can still be found in circulation today.

Where Did This Myth Come From?

The myth of the 1956 D penny most likely started because of a misinterpretation of mintage numbers. According to the United States Mint, 924,075,000 pennies were minted in 1956, with 37,334,580 of those being minted in Denver.

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Although these numbers might seem small compared to current penny mintages, they are actually quite high for the time. In fact, the 1956 D penny is not even the lowest mintage penny from the 1950s! That title belongs to the 1955 doubled die penny, which is actually worth a lot of money.

Why the 1956 D Penny Is Not Worth a Lot of Money

So, why is the 1956 D penny not worth a lot of money? The answer is simple – it’s because there are still millions of them in circulation. In other words, they are not rare.

Furthermore, even if you were to find a 1956 D penny that is in good condition, it would still only be worth a few cents. You might be able to sell it to a collector for a bit more than its face value, but you would be lucky to get more than a dollar or two.

Some Misleading Information About the 1956 D Penny

Unfortunately, there are still many collectors and sellers out there who want people to believe that the 1956 D penny is worth a lot of money. They do this by spreading false information, such as:

  • The 1956 D penny was only minted for a short period
  • The 1956 D penny is the rarest penny from the 1950s
  • The 1956 D penny has doubled dies or other errors that make it valuable

These claims are simply not true. The 1956 D penny was minted for the entire year, and it is not the rarest penny from the 1950s. Also, while there are some 1956 D pennies with doubled dies or other errors, these are very rare and are not the norm.

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Some other Interesting Coin Collecting Facts

While the 1956 D penny might not be worth much, there are still some other coins out there that are highly valuable. Here are some interesting facts:

The 1943 Copper Penny

The 1943 copper penny is worth a lot of money, especially if it is in good condition. This is because, in 1943, the United States Mint mistakenly used copper planchets instead of zinc-coated steel ones. As a result, only a few copper pennies were produced, and they are now highly valuable.

The 1913 Liberty Head Nickel

The 1913 Liberty Head nickel is another highly valuable coin. Only five of these nickels were ever minted, and they now sell for millions of dollars. In fact, one of these nickels sold for $4.56 million in 2018!


In conclusion, the myth of the ‘value’ of the 1956 D penny is just that – a myth. While it might be a fun story to tell and believe, the reality is that these pennies are not worth much money. So, next time you come across one, don’t get too excited. Instead, keep your eyes peeled for other coins that are actually worth something, like the 1943 copper penny or the 1913 Liberty Head nickel.

Table: Comparing the Mintage of Pennies in the 1950s

Year Total Mintage Denver Mintage
1950 404,022,000 153,132,760
1951 1,694,768,000 245,542,000
1952 1,592,914,000 281,160,000
1953 1,090,336,000 363,584,000
1954 1,168,148,000 282,760,000
1955 586,032,000 44,610,000
1956 924,075,000 37,334,580
1957 1,051,342,000 1,051,342,000
1958 923,304,000 168,579,030

List: 5 Highly Valuable Coins

  1. 1913 Liberty Head Nickel
  2. 1943 Copper Penny
  3. 1804 Silver Dollar
  4. 1894 S Barber Dime
  5. 1794 Flowing Hair Dollar
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  • ‘1956 D Wheat Penny.’ American Rare Coin website. Accessed August 21, 2021.
  • ‘The 1956 D Wheat Penny: Historical Significance and Value.’ Mount Vernon Coin. Accessed August 21, 2021.
  • ‘5 Rare and Valuable Coins.’ Accessed August 21, 2021.