The United States large cent was a coin with a face value of 1/100 of a United States dollar. Its nominal diameter was 11⁄8 inch (28.57 mm). The first official mintage of the large cent was in 1793, and its production continued until 1857, when it was officially replaced by the modern-size one-cent coin (commonly called the penny).
Large cents were made of nearly pure copper, or copper as pure as it emerged from smelting, without any deliberate addition of other metals (such as occurs in bronze).
First struck in 1793, the large cent was minted every year from 1793 to 1857 except 1815. When the United States declared war in 1812 against Great Britain, coinage was affected. The wartime embargo against shipments made it so the mint could not get any new copper planchets, which were imported from Great Britain, to strike coins.   The mint made do with what supply it had and struck coins into 1815. After the war ended in 1815, the mint wasted no time in ordering new planchets. For an unknown reason no coins were dated 1815 from the supply the mint had in the interim.  There may have not been a significant supply of planchets left and when new ones were received it may have been easier to use the old design and date.  In addition to the copper shortage, people also hoarded precious metals during the war.  Altered and fantasy cents with the 1815 date occasionally appear. 
The Philadelphia Mint produced all large cents, which contained twice the copper of the half cent. This made the coins bulky and heavy, bigger than modern-day U.S. Quarters. 
The obverse featured a bust of Liberty with a reverse of a ring of chains. Henry Voigt's design was almost universally criticized in its time for its unattractiveness and perceived allusion to slavery. It bears the distinction, however, of being the first official coinage minted by the United States federal government on its own equipment and premises. 36,103 were minted. Its low survival rate, in addition to its small mintage, coupled with being the first regular federal issue and a one-year design and type, has created an extremely strong demand from generations of numismatists. As a result, all surviving specimens command high prices ranging from $2,000-$3,000 in the absolute lowest state of preservation to over $500,000 in the highest.
The Mint caved in to the intense ridicule later in 1793, and Mint Director David Rittenhouse ordered Adam Eckfeldt to revise the obverse and reverse designs. Liberty's bust was redesigned with even longer, wilder hair, and the chain was removed from the reverse in favor of a wreath. Scholars are undecided as to what plant or plants are depicted in the wreath, with several varieties extant. Total mintage of the wreath reverse numbered about 63,000 pieces.
Rittenhouse was dissatisfied with Eckfeldt's designs, and with the criticism of the Chain cents fresh in his mind, he hired Joseph Wright to do yet another redesign in the denomination's troubled first year. Wright's design faced Liberty to the right and "tamed" her wild hair. The Phrygian cap was added as an ancient symbol of freedom. The reverse design was revised to a recognizable laurel wreath, and future Chief Engraver Robert Scot had a hand in several minor revisions to the design over the next three years.
This design was more successful and it was continued into 1796. In 1795, planchets became too thin for the edge lettering because of a weight reduction, so the mint stopped edge lettering on the cent, and the rest of these coins were made with a plain edge. Four coins from 1795 are known to have a reeded edge. 
Robert Scot redesigned the whole of United States coinage for 1796, applying a new design featuring a bust of Liberty wearing a drapery at the neckline and a ribbon in her flowing hair. The reverse design now featured an olive wreath. As with earlier types, several minor revisions to the design were made in the first few years, with the final 1797 design lasting through the end of the type in 1807.
Around 1860, an altered 1803 obverse die (re-engraved “1804”) and an 1820 reverse die were used to create several unofficial “restrikes” of the rare 1804 cent. While not genuine 1804 cents, they are sometimes collected along with the originals and are listed in various numismatic magazines and A Guide Book of United States Coins .  
John Reich, assistant to Chief Engraver Scot, was appointed by new Mint Director Robert Patterson to redesign Scot's Draped Bust cent (along with every other circulating coin design). The so-called "Classic Head" derives its name from the fillet worn by Liberty on the obverse, though the fillet was worn only by male athletes in ancient Greece. The copper used during the years in which Classic Head cents were minted was of a higher quality, containing less metallic impurity. Consequently, they were softer and more prone to wear and corrode more quickly than issues before or after. As a result, unimpaired, high-grade specimens are especially difficult to obtain and fetch strong premiums when they appear on market, especially with original red or red-brown mint luster.
As a response to public criticism of the Classic Head, the Mint assigned Chief Engraver Scot to redesign the cent in April 1815, after the War of 1812. Only 2 Matron Head large cents were produced in 1815 on planchets left over from 1814. This newest design enlarged the obverse portrait, giving Liberty a much more mature look (leading to the Matron Head reference), and surrounded the portrait with stars along the outer edge of the coin. The "Matron head" design was modified in 1835 to give Liberty a younger look and matron head cents continued to be made until 1839.
Similar to the 1804 restrike cent, around the 1860s-1870s, several "restrikes" were made by a third party not affiliated with the Mint. While not genuine 1823 cents, they are nevertheless sometimes collected alongside their genuine counterparts. The restrike cannot be confused with the original, as it was minted with an 1813 reverse. 
Facing more negative public reaction, the Coronet cents were redesigned in 1835 by new Chief Engraver Christian Gobrecht. This last major change to the coin updated the obverse by giving Liberty a slimmer, more youthful appearance. Minor tweaks continued through 1843, and the 1843 design prevailed through the end of mintage in 1857.
Some 11 years after the large cent was discontinued, a mint employee coined several large cents dated 1868, almost certainly for sale as instant rarities to numismatists. About a dozen and a half of these unofficial issues, struck in both copper and nickel, are known to survive. 
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to United States cents .|
The United States one-cent coin, often called the "penny", is a unit of currency equaling one one-hundredth of a United States dollar. It has been the lowest face-value physical unit of U.S. currency since the abolition of the half-cent in 1857. The first U.S. cent was produced in 1787, and the cent has been issued primarily as a copper or copper-plated coin throughout its history.
A nickel is a five-cent coin struck by the United States Mint. Composed of cupronickel, the piece has been issued since 1866. Its diameter is 0.835 inches (21.21 mm) and its thickness is 0.077 inches (1.95 mm).
The dime, in United States usage, is a ten-cent coin, one tenth of a United States dollar, labeled formally as "one dime". The denomination was first authorized by the Coinage Act of 1792.
The half dime, or half disme, was a silver coin, valued at five cents, formerly minted in the United States.
The half cent was the smallest denomination of United States coin ever minted. It was first minted in 1793 and last minted in 1857. It was minted with five different designs.
The Gobrecht dollar, minted from 1836 to 1839, was the first silver dollar struck for circulation by the United States Mint since production of that denomination was officially halted in 1806. The coin was struck in small numbers to determine whether the reintroduced silver dollar would be well received by the public.
The Flowing Hair dollar was the first dollar coin issued by the United States federal government. The coin was minted in 1794 and 1795; its size and weight were based on the Spanish dollar, which was popular in trade throughout the Americas.
The Indian Head cent, also known as an Indian Head penny, was a one-cent coin ($0.01) produced by the United States Bureau of the Mint from 1859 to 1909. It was designed by James Barton Longacre, the Chief Engraver at the Philadelphia Mint.
The Flying Eagle cent is a one-cent piece struck by the Mint of the United States as a pattern coin in 1856 and for circulation in 1857 and 1858. The coin was designed by Mint Chief Engraver James B. Longacre, with the eagle in flight based on the work of Longacre's predecessor, Christian Gobrecht.
The Shield nickel was the first United States five-cent piece to be made out of copper-nickel, the same alloy of which American nickels are struck today. Designed by James B. Longacre, the coin was issued from 1866 until 1883, when it was replaced by the Liberty Head nickel. The coin takes its name from the motif on its obverse, and was the first five-cent coin referred to as a "nickel"—silver pieces of that denomination had been known as half dimes.
The chain cent was America's first large cent and the first circulating coin officially produced by the United States Mint. It was struck only during 1793.
The Wreath cent was an American large cent. It was the second design type, following the Chain cent in 1793. It was produced only during that year.
The Silver center cent is an American pattern coin produced by the United States Mint in 1792. As a precursor to the large cent it was one of the first coins of the United States and an early example of a bimetallic coin. Only 12 original examples are known to exist, of which one is located in the National Numismatic Collection at the Smithsonian Institution. Two more specimens exist but contain fabricated plugs added after minting.
The three-dollar piece was a gold coin produced by the United States Bureau of the Mint from 1854 to 1889. Authorized by the Act of February 21, 1853, the coin was designed by Mint Chief Engraver James B. Longacre. The obverse bears a representation of Lady Liberty wearing a headdress of a Native American princess and the reverse a wreath of corn, wheat, cotton, and tobacco.
In 1847, the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi, under the reign of King Kamehaheha III, issued its first official coinage—a large one-cent copper penny—to alleviate the chronic shortage of small denomination coins circulating in the Hawaiian Islands. The next and last official coinage of the Hawaiian Islands was minted in 1883, by King Kalākaua I; however during the intervening period, the changing needs of the Hawaiian Islands were met by circulating private-issued tokens and the coins of the United States of America.
"Draped Bust" was the name given to a design of United States coins. It appeared on much of the regular-issue copper and silver United States coinage, 1796–1807. It was designed by engraver Robert Scot.
The Liberty Cap large cent was a type of large cent struck by the United States Mint from 1793 until 1796, when it was replaced by the Draped Bust large cent. The coin features an image of the goddess of Liberty and her accompanying Phrygian cap.
The Classic Head was a coin design issued by the United States Mint in the early 19th century. It was introduced for copper coinage in 1808 by engraver John Reich and later redesigned and improved by Chief Engraver William Kneass.
The Coronet large cent was a type of large cent issued by the United States Mint at the Philadelphia Mint from 1816 until 1839.
The Liberty Cap half cent was the first half cent coin produced by the United States Mint. It was issued from 1793 until 1797.