One way to determine a 1970 S Doubled Die Obverse penny’s value is to look at the type of doubling on the reverse. The obverse is the side that has doubled die letters or the word Liberty, and the reverse has a doubled S mint mark. These varieties are the rarest and most valuable types. This example image is from Heritage Auctions. This type of coin has a rich satiny luster and frosty texture, with lavender and tangerine hues. It is well struck and features the doubling in clear detail on the legends.
The most prominent variety of the 1970-S Doubled Die can be identified in a few different ways. First, it has a very strong doubling on the date and the word LIBERTY. The doubling on the phrase IN GOD WE TRUST is particularly strong. This coin is also classified as a Class-1/Rotated hub doubled die. It has the same grading as the 1955-S double die cent, but has a stronger image.
Second, it’s important to note that counterfeiting of U.S. coins is a serious problem, and only a handful of examples were certified by grading companies. The good news is that these counterfeits have been recovered by the Secret Service. Unlike genuine 1969-S Doubled Die Obverse cents, these fakes are rare. However, if you’ve found one in circulation, it may be worth several thousand dollars.
If you own a 1970-S double die penny, you should be prepared to shell out between $12,500 and $22,500. In fact, a coin with a MS 66 grade is worth $24,150. It’s worth remembering that a 1970-S double die penny was never intended for daily use. The doubled die is the third rarest major doubled die in the entire Lincoln cent series.
Although rare, the 1969-S version was deemed counterfeit by the U.S. Secret Service in mid-70. The coins were returned after the agency realized their mistake. However, the 1969-S is a more valuable, storied coin, thanks to its rarity and desireability. There is no way to tell for sure if a 1970-S penny is genuine. However, it’s worth a shot.
The most valuable and interesting minting varieties are the ones that aren’t subtle. For example, the 1955 Lincoln cent is a doubled die. Many novice collectors believe they have a Doubled Ear. But despite the dramatic enlargements, the coin doesn’t even look like a Doubled Ear. So, the lesson is to ignore subtle minting varieties and focus on more common coins.
A 1970 S proof penny with small date is worth $40 in PR 65 condition. The larger 1970 S penny is worth $1, and an uncirculated one with the same grade will bring in $55.
The 1970-S cent is also notable for its small date versions. Collectors tend to focus on these because their value is higher. A 1970-S cent with a high 7 date is known as a High 7 variety. However, it is possible to find small date versions of these coins. The 1970-S Large Date is also scarce. With only 50 examples known, it is the third scarcest major double die penny.
The highest-graded S-pennies have a Mint State 65 Red grade. Its luster and clarity makes it a highly desirable piece of currency. Its price has steadily climbed from $80 in 2000 to $1,500 in 2008. If you are interested in purchasing a 1970-S penny, you can do so online. The online auction site eBay offers a large selection of the rarest types of these coins.