In February, 1857, the United States Congress passed a law providing for the production of small cents. These became known as Flying Eagle cents, which are dated from 1856-1858. Though the design did not last long, these 88% copper cents launched one of the most popular denominations in U.S. coinage. Since then, the only other designs featured on pennies were the “Indian Head” and President Abraham Lincoln. Today, Lincoln Cents feature his portrait on the obverse with a shield on the reverse and are mostly composed of zinc.