Yo, Bro --
You have a US large cent. These big and bold coins are also known as 'coronet head cents', and they come from a time when a cent was *worth* something!
Your 1834 specimen catalogs for $20 US dollars in well worn condition. If you look at the coin in my picture, it is in well preserved condition, so its catalog value would be about $200. Do you get the picture? Condition means a lot when it comes to large cents. The less wear, the better the value.
NEVER CLEAN A COIN. CLEANING RUINS VALUE. You can't improve condition by cleaning.
Very rough guidance on these values is:
worn: $25 US dollars catalog value
average circulated: $70
well preserved: $150
fully uncirculated: $250 and up
Be sure you understand what my word 'catalog' means. See the Terminology page for a detailed explanation about how to interpret catalog values.
A large body of collectors specializes in early US copper coins. These coins date back as far as 1793. The earlier the date, the more valuable the coin, in general.
There are all sorts of twists and turns when it comes to specific values of early american coppers. We can not address them on this forum. Our favorite web page with plenty of detail on this subject appears at the CoinAuctionsHelp.com site. Some general guidance about large cents is:
1. Coins dated before 1795 are very valuable, even in worn condition. Some pre-76 coins are *very* valuable.
2. Coins dated 1799 are valuable
3. Coins dated 1803, 1807, and 1839 may be worth $1000s of dollars if they fulfill certain criteria (write if you have one of these)
4. For coins dated 1821, 1823, or 1857, multiply the values quoted by 3.
Otherwise figure values near those quoted above for all other dates. Most large cents fall in the range of $20 to $200, depending on condition.