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Flying Eagle (1856 - 1858)

The 1856 Flying Eagle cent, a pattern, was made to show Congress how the new cent would look. Additional Proof pieces were struck for sale to collectors. It is believed that between 2,000 and 3,000 pieces were struck in all. These have always been collected along with regular issues because of their early widespread popularity.

Some 1858-dated cents have been deceptively altered to read 1856. They are easy to spot because the shape of the 5 is different on the 1858 than it is on the 1856.

Many varieties are known for 1857 and 1858. In particular, 1858 is found with two major variations. In the Large Letter design, the A and M in AMERICA are joined, while in the Small Letter design they are separated; minor variations of the reverse designs of corn, wheat, cotton, and tobacco also appear. The 1858, 8 Over 7 variety can be identified by a small dot in the field above the first 8—during production, the die was ground down until the 7 was invisible. Coins with the 7 showing are more desirable.

Flying Eagle (1856 - 1858)
1856 - 1858

Flying Eagle (1856 - 1858)

Coin Attributes

  • Design Years: 1856 - 1858
    Designer: James B. Longacre
    Weight: 4.670 grams
    Diameter:19 mm
    Composition:
    • 0.8800 copper, 0.1200 nickel
    Edge: plain
Grade Price Guide
Circ|MS|PF
  • Description
  • Mintage
  • G-4 Good. Good. All details worn, but readable.
  • VG-8 Very Good. Very Good. Details in eagle's feathers and eye evident, but worn.
  • F-12 Fine. Fine. Eagle-head details and feather tips sharp.
  • VF-20 Very Fine. Very Fine. Considerable detail visible in feathers in right wing and tail.
  • EF-40 Extremely Fine. Extremely Fine. Slight wear, all details sharp.
  • AU-50 About Uncirculated. About Uncirculated. Slight wear on eagle's left wing and breast.
  • MS-60 Uncirculated. Uncirculated. No trace of wer. Light blemishes
  • MS-60BN Mint State. Mint State. No trace of wer. Light blemishes
  • MS-63BN Mint State. Mint State. Some distracting contact marks or blemishes in prime focal areas. Some impairment of luster possible.
  • MS-64 Very Choice Unc.. Very Choice Unc..
  • MS-64BN Mint State. Mint State.
  • MS-65 Gem Uncirculated. Gem Uncirculated.
  • MS-65BN Mint State. Mint State.
  • MS-66 Gem Unc.. Gem Unc..
  • PF-60 PF-60. PF-60.
  • PF-60BN Proof. Proof.
  • PF-63BN Proof. Proof. Nearly perfect.
  • PF-64BN Proof. Proof.
  • PF-65BN Proof. Proof.
  • PF-65CAM Proof. Proof.
  • 1857
  • 17,450,000
    • 1858
    • 24,600,000
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