U.S. Half Penny: See How Much Half Cent Coins Are Worth

1800_united_states_half_cent_reverse.jpgMany people believe that the 1-cent penny is the lowest face value coin in the United States.

This is untrue.

In the U.S. half cents were issued from 1793 all the way until 1857.

There were 5 different portraits displayed on the half cent over the course of its time:


  • The Liberty Cap with the head facing left was designed by Joseph Wright and has letters on the edge of the coin that read “TWO HUNDRED FOR A DOLLAR”.

  • The Liberty Cap with the head facing right was designed by Robert Scot in 1794 and John Gardner in 1795. Both also contain the lettered edge.

  • The Draped Bust variety was minted from 1800-1808 and was designed by Robert Scot. This one had no edge lettering.

  • The Classic Head was minted from 1809 through 1836 and was designed by John Reich.

  • Lastly, the Braided Hair variety was minted from 1840 until the half cent was discontinued in 1857.


All types and varieties of the half cent were minted at the Philadelphia mint. I will try to give you an idea of what the varieties of half cents are worth. Please remember that the large margin I put in the prices of some of these coins is because it mostly depends on what the grade of your coin is.


Braided Hair Variety
1849 to1857 – $50.00 to $300.00
1840 to1849 Proof 63 – $5,000.00


Classic Head Variety
1836 Proof 63 – $8,000.00
1835 to1832 – $50.00 to $165.00
1831 Proof 40 – $11,000.00
1829 to1825 – $50.00 to $300.00
1811 – $165.00 to $6,000.00
1810 – $50.00 to $800.00
1809 – $50.00 to $500.00


Draped Bust Variety
1803 to 1808 – $50.00 to $325.00
1802 2/0 – $325.00 to $9,000.00
1800 – $40.00 to $240.00


Liberty Cap (Facing Right)
1797 Gripped Edge – $8,200.00 to $50,000.00
1797 Lettered Edge – $650.00 to $5,500.00
1797 Plain Edge – $240.00 to $1,100.00
1796 No Pole On Cap – $12,000.00 to $55,000.00
1796 Pole On Cap – $8,000.00 to $24,000.00
1795 All Varieties – $185.00 to $1,100.00
1794 – $260.00 to $1,400.00


Liberty Cap (Facing Left)
1793 – $1,200.00 to $9,000.00


All of the different types and varieties on the same denomination of coin can be confusing.

It is much better to have a visual aid to know what coins I am speaking of.

You can find pictures of most of half cent coins here.


I have been collecting and trading coins for years. Coin collecting is a hobby for me, and I've done a lot of research about coins through the years.

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  • Suepmonks

    I have a 1905 half penny.  what is it worth?

  • Sandy

    my father has a 1802 indian head penny do you have an idea what it’s worth

  • sandy

    i have a 1797 liberty coin with an eagle on the back and a woman on the front
    what could this be worth silver dollar



    • JoshuaTheFunTimesGuide


      There is just one 1776 Massachusetts Janus half penny, but countless replicas. Such pieces have value more as a curiosity and are worth only a few dollars.

  • Jackie

    I have a 1920 half penny, is it worth anything?