Philadelphia Mint cents with the new "P" mintmark on them are beginning to spread their wings and fly to all corners of the country.
I have wondered in a prior blog how long it would take for regular collector reports of sightings to commence.
February seems to be the magic month for the 2017-P coins.
Perhaps it is no wonder.
The Philadelphia Mint has reported production of over half a billion of the new coins in the month of January.
To be precise, the figure is 515,200,000. More will be coming.
The Mint added the mintmark to celebrate its 225th anniversary.
It has come a long way since its founding in 1792. It wants everyone who uses the cent to know it.
Collectors are indeed noticing.
Jamaica, N.Y., collector Uttam Singha writes me that he receives the new coins regularly now.
"First time I got four in 'C-town Supermarket' in my neighborhood on 26th January. After that, I found more 2017-P cents in different locations in New York City."
Major cities are where new coins tend to find their way into circulation first.
But they are not the only location.
"Today I received my first 2017-P Lincoln cent in change from my local grocery store. I found the "P" for Philadelphia mintmark to be an interesting addition to the coin."
This report is dated Jan. 30 and came to me in a handwritten letter from Andrew Dawson of Hagerstown, Md.
It is much appreciated.
"I just received two 2017-P pennies on Feb. 1st," reported Jim Crowe of Millers Creek, N.C.
Thanks for these reports and others up and down the East Coast.
Collectors in the Midwest are checking their change as well.
A Lawrenceburg, Ind., collector said he received two 2017-D cents in his change at a Speedway gas station on Super Bowl Sunday.
Sooner or later I expect new 2017 coins to reach Iola, Wis. It will probably be summer. The coins will probably have a "D" mintmark.
New cents are usually first, but there is a possibility it could be a new 2017 quarter.
In the meantime, please keep me posted of your finds of new 2017-dated coins of all denominations, not just the new "P" cent.
Buzz blogger Dave Harper has twice won the Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog and is editor of the weekly newspaper "Numismatic News."
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