PCGS Specials

HomeUS CoinsFirst 2026 Semiquincentennial Coin Design Candidates for Lincoln Cent, Jefferson Nickel

First 2026 Semiquincentennial Coin Design Candidates for Lincoln Cent, Jefferson Nickel

First 2026 Semiquincentennial Coin Design Candidates for Lincoln Cent, Jefferson Nickel

By CoinWeek ….

At the February 15, 2024 meeting of the United States Commission of Fine Arts (CFA), Semiquincentennial coin design candidates for the 2026 Lincoln cent and Jefferson nickel were revealed. The United States Mint delivered the portfolio of designs to the CFA for review and recommendation, per the Commission’s federal mandate.

Design candidates for the obverses of these coins are pictured below. As can be seen from the images provided by the Mint, the changes are relatively unobtrusive and involve the addition of a privy mark, the changing of the date to include a range from 1776 to 2026, or a combination of both. On the cent, the Liberty Bell privy mark can be rendered in incuse or relief, with the number 250 portrayed in Roman numerals inside it. When the Liberty Bell is incuse, the 250 is in relief, and vice versa. Additionally, the privy mark and the date range can be combined, and each element’s placement can be altered.

The CFA chose this design for the 2026 Lincoln cent.
The CFA chose this design for the 2026 Lincoln cent.
The CFA chose this design for the 2026 Jefferson nickel.
The CFA chose this design for the 2026 Jefferson nickel.

For their part, the CFA chose Option 1 for both coins, as they believe the “simplicity” of the design would serve the small coinage best. Since there was no quorum present at the Feb. 15 meeting, the CFA will officially vote on these recommendations at its next meeting, currently scheduled for March 21, 2024.

Additional 2026 cent design candidates.
Additional 2026 cent design candidates.
Additional 2026 nickel design candidates.
Additional 2026 nickel designs candidates.

About the 2026 Semiquincentennial Coin Design Changes

Authorized by the Circulating Collectible Coin Redesign Act of 2020 (Public Law 116-330 – PDF Link), the Mint will create one-year design types for all circulating coins in 2026 to celebrate the 250th anniversary (Semiquincentennial) of the United States of America gaining its independence from Great Britain starting in 1776. The program is reminiscent of the Bicentennial coin program that saw new designs on the quarter, half dollar, and dollar beginning in 1975. In 2026, however, the Mint can produce up to five quarter designs, with one dedicated to a historically important woman or women as mandated by law. Also, the Mint is authorized to issue a dollar coin with a Semiquincentennial design.

After 2026, all circulating coins will revert to their prior designs, with the exception of the quarter, which will then feature annual reverses in the 2027-2030 Youth Sports Quarter Program.

* * *

Coinweek is the top independent online media source for rare coin and currency news, with analysis and information contributed by leading experts across the numismatic spectrum.

Related Articles


  1. I would like the Dual date with a privy mark design. Awesome. For the anniversary of the Silver Eagle – 1986-2026, make a dual date Silver Eagle. Perhaps on the Silver Eagle or another coin, we have the liberty bell privy mark in small font all-over the coin, similar to the 2019 pride of two nations maple leaf. Also, an Idea for the Silver Eagle Anniversary not only a one year only fractional set but make a special silver eagle MS with a holographic tint to the American Flag or another feature. Something similar to the holographic design put on the 2024 Dragon by Pamp. The holographic design has the appearance of coloring – Red/Blue (our flag colors). This would be Awesome!!!

  2. I’d love to see these two denominations issued with past classic designs, if only in collectors’ sets. A 2026 Flying Eagle or Indian Head cent and Buffalo Nickel would IMO be pretty awesome.

    • Jerry Parsons and Clockwork Squirrel, I really, really like how the both of you think, regarding the upcoming, once in a lifetime opportunity to recognize and celebrate our countries 250th Anniversary! Some of the best ideas/suggestions I’ve read about! Now the sad part… Not a chance, although the US Mint has been given permissions to create through legislation. However any additions that would enhance this celebratory opportunity, would need approval, but I don’t think it would take too much to approach and convince Congress, to approve something worthwhile. After all, this is a Historical moment! Love the idea of tiny Liberty Bell with the 250 in the field, comparable to the Pride of 2 Nations $5 Maple Leaf in the set. Perhaps alternating Liberty Bell and 250 separate vs overlapping, as proposed on the Cent and Nickel? Agree they should and could pull out the stops for the ASE’s and AGE’s both bullion as well as numismatic offerings in 2026. Now you’ve got me thinking? Hmmm?

  3. In 2026 just give me a commemorative penny made of pure copper and not zinc. Almost every zincoln penny I see post 1982 is corroding and looks awful due to surface damage (rotting). Even the coins from 1976 still come around in common pocket change an look respectable to our USA. Let’s step up to the glory deserved to American coin currency in 2026!

  4. I love the Dual Date with the privy mark designs, but for the nickel, I hope they will keep the “~” in the dual date but move the privy mark on top. However, I was expecting to see they will change the design completely inclued the Presidents’ portait, just like they did in 2005, the second year of the Westward Journey Nickel series, or move the date to the reverse and ” UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” and the denomination to the obverse, or put a “P” mint mart to the penny if struck from the philadelphia Mint.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Park Avenue Numismatics Gold and Silver Bullion

Professional Coin Grading Service

Blanchard and Company Gold and Precious Metals