NGC 1c 1944 Lincoln wheat cent struck on a steel cent planchet. This transitional off-metal is one of the more popular transitional off-metal U.S. coins. It’s cousin, the 1943 copper cent, is the true “king of errors”, with the 1944 being the companion transitional to that coin. All 1944 Lincoln cents are of course struck normally in copper, but this coin is struck on a 1943 era steel cent planchet. The transitional is very scarce, with only about 20-25 examples known.
Some of the 1944 steel cents may have in fact been struck on 1944 Belgian 2 Franc coins, since they were struck on the same 1943-type of steel cent planchet at the Philadelphia Mint. However, considering that examples of transitional 1944 cents on steel planchets are also known at San Francisco and Denver, we believe all P, D, and S 1944 steels are likely from 1943 leftover planchets.
The coin is the zinc-coated steel planchet, and so is steel colored in appearance. The coin has above average surfaces, which retain much of the original mint luster. Also, the vast majority of these are rusted or dark gray or otherwise impaired with cleaning or other damage, but this coin shows only very minimal porosity (virtually all have some), virtually no rust at all except some obscure small flecks, and it has white surfaces. Overall a nice example, and superior to the average example. These are tough to find this nice, and also fairly priced. Ex-Whitney Collection.
NGC AU55 with only minute specks or rust, and overall very pleasing surfaces with good luster for the grade. Tough to find this nice in AU.