– Lincoln Cent (Modern) (1959-date)

The Lincoln Cent, in its modern form, has been issued by the United States Mint since 1959 to the present day. It's a continuation of the original Lincoln Cent series but with some notable design changes. Here's an overview: 

Design: The obverse (front) of the coin still features a bust of President Abraham Lincoln, just like the earlier Wheat Cents. However, the design was updated by Frank Gasparro in 1959 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Lincoln's birth.  

Reverse Design (1959-2008): The reverse (back) of the coin from 1959 to 2008 featured the Lincoln Memorial. This iconic image commemorates the 150th anniversary of Lincoln's birth and was chosen through a public competition.  

Reverse Design (2009): In 2009, the reverse design of the Lincoln Cent was changed temporarily to commemorate the bicentennial anniversary of Lincoln's birth and the 100th anniversary of the first issuance of the Lincoln Cent.  

Four different designs were released that year, each representing a different aspect of Lincoln's life and legacy: Birthplace, Formative Years, Professional Life, and Presidency. 

Reverse Design (2010-present): From 2010 onwards, the reverse design of the Lincoln Cent returned to the original Lincoln Memorial design. However, the reverse now includes the addition of the initials "FG," representing the designer Frank Gasparro, on the right side of the memorial steps. 

Metal Composition: The modern Lincoln Cent has undergone changes in its metal composition over the years. From 1959 to 1982, it was struck in an alloy of 95% copper and 5% zinc, similar to the earlier Wheat Cents.  

However, due to rising metal prices, the composition was changed in 1982 to 97.5% zinc and 2.5% copper, with a thin plating of pure copper. This change resulted in a lighter coin with a slightly different appearance. 

Beyond its aesthetic appeal, the 1822 Capped Head Half Eagle BD-1 also serves as a tangible reminder of the economic and political forces at play during this tumultuous period.  

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