We all have tons of pennies just popped up in random place around the house. The bottom of a purse, the washer or dryer or even the floor of the car. I am forever finding them laying on the ground.
Yesterday, I was carrying wristlet that had a magnetic snap holding the two sides together. When I went to change back to my billfold, I found a penny stuck to the magnet. Which is weird since pennies are not magnetic.
I pulled it loose and it was an odd color. More a grayish metallic instead of copper. It happened to be a wheat back penny. So I thought, "What in the world?"
I immediately went to google and there was a ton of information. It turns out the 1943 penny is magnetic because during the war they needed the copper for something else so they made pennies out of steel instead. Now, there was a batch of pennies that got made by mistake with copper in them in 1943 and they found out what was going on and stopped that run. Therefore, my (what I thought would be rare) steel penny is actually just a run of the mill penny. It is worth about .25 cents simply because of it being what it is. Had it been ordinary copper like all other pennies, I would have been much happier. One sold recently for $1,000,000.00 at a coin auction. Leave it to me to have the one year of penny that was steel which made in not valuable, even though it is still a little rare.