Both the Fugio and its successor coins – collectively known as the United States large cent – were minted from copper. And over the years, the United States large cent was graced by a number of different designs. Examples include the Flowing Hair design from 1793, the Draped Bust from between 1796 and 1807 and the Braided Hair from 1839 and 1857.
These large cents were, it’s worth noting, a good deal bigger than the ones that we are accustomed to today. Their diameter was originally 1 and 1/8 inch – as opposed to the 3/4-inch modern penny that we know today. The dimension of the cent was dropped to its present size back in 1857.
This drop in size was also accompanied by a change in the copper content of the coins. Indeed, 1857 saw the introduction of the Flying Eagle cent, which was made from copper mixed with 12 percent nickel. And then in 1858 the Indian Head penny came into circulation before remaining in use for some 50 years.