Interesting Facts about the Flying Eagle Small Cent Series:
-- The 1857-1858 "Flying Eagle" cent introduced the small penny size to U.S. coinage. The public welcomed the compact, non-smearing copper-nickel cent in lieu of the big, 100% copper penny that could stain hands.
-- The "Flying Eagle" cent was the first U.S. penny without a Liberty design.
-- Its spectacular "Flying Eagle" design was originally intended as a silver dollar engraving. It presented minting problems with the eagle's head and tail, leading to its quick retirement after only two years service.
-- The "Flying Eagle" and early 1859-1864 "Indian Head" pennies were known as "nickels" or "nicks" because of their new copper-nickel content. They later came to be called "white cents" to describe their light-hued appearance.