Börner photographed this vanity vertical Motorcycle
plate. This is the first one of these spotted. The vertical plates
have been available for a little over two years, and although they're not
common, they do fill a need. According to the law that made the vertical
plates possible, Act 89, as
of 1/1/2016, there was to be a report of the number of vertical plates issued
and the cost of issuance and any required revision to the fee so as to maintain
necessary financial support for the highway system.
This Antique Motorcycle
plate is a bit of a mystery. Judging by the wide bolt hole separation it
is a modern plate, yet it doesn't fit any of the known serial number formats
used prior to the changeover to the all-too-familiar visa card family of plates
Another plate with a 2S serial was seen back in August of 2015. Click the
link above to see the other plate. If anyone knows the story here, please
fill us in.
While on the subject of
I took this photo at a recent Oley, PA bike event. This plate helps to
narrow down the transition from what I call Format 4 to Format 5. The
main difference is the Format 4 plates use a narrower bolt hole spacing while
the Format 5 plates have switched to a wider spacing. The change has been
narrowed to between L00 and R00.
Next plate for this week is this very nice
number 1 image of a Combat Act Badge
from Nathan Krawzyk. The Combat Act Badge plate is part of a series of 5
combat related plates all using the CO suffix.
Here are two images of the same number 1 Elizabethtown
College plate. The picture on the far left is from Eric Conner
and was taken in mid-2009. Note the fading and deterioration of the
sheeting on the near left plate. That picture was taken recently by Kyle
Kuser. By the way, there was an all-zero Elizabethtown College plate.
Click the link above to see more images.
Scranton plates from U/S11000 to U/S11095 represent a small group of
plates issued after the re-plating process was completed in late 2001.
This plate is part of the two-tiered system on the www base that was common to
organizations whose plate program started on the yellow on blue base.
Click the link for a further description of how the plates evolved. Thanks
to John Clark for the image.
This first picture of a Waynesburg
University vanity plate was snapped by
Waynesburg plates have been active for about four years, and since this plate
type is on the visitPA base they can be personalized as shown here.
This group of three first generation
Vietnam Vets or Veterans of Vietnam War, Inc. on the far left was
added to the current plate display page. The newer image on the www base
is an example of a later plate issue after the replacement of the first
generation. The replacement plates ended at V/V02791 and later picked up
at V/V04300 leaving the number in between skipped.
Bob Connison is helping to fill another void with
this pair of 1935
Dealer plates. The plates shown here are 6" by 10" and are the
short version with the keystones on each side of the word Dealer. 2 to 4
character plates were configured as shown here, while 5 character (X0000 or
0X000) were 6" by 12" and had the keystones on both sides of the legend to the
outside of the bolt holes. Click the above link for more on formatting.
Also from Bob Connison is this very nice '36
Dealer plate. For 1936 plates with 4 characters were a short 6"
by 10" in size, while 5 character plates as shown here were 6" by 12". In
addition the X could be in the first, second or third position. Click the
link to see an additional plate with the X in the second position.
I've seen a picture of this plate in the
past, but I saw the actual 1914 Motorcycle
plate on a bike last week in Oley, PA, at a bike event. 1914 was the first
year for motorcycle plates, they were white on black porcelain, and the first
character in the 1914 and '15 plates was the letter O, although you can't
distinguish it from a zero by looking at the plate. The plates were 4½" high but came in 4
different lengths depending on the number of digits after the O which could be 1 to 5.
Harry Campbell has provided this very nice
plate picture. According to state records there were some 25 thousand of
these plates issued. The series started at 1 and ran up thru 5 numbers.
All the plates were 4½" tall, with the length being 6" for 1 to 3-digit plates,
and 8" for 4 & 5 digit plates. The plates were red on black, although this
plate may be a repaint.
This very nice 1920 Motorcycle repaint
was also provided by Harry Campbell. The original colors were white on
dark blue, although the blue on this plate is such that it almost appears black
in the photo. These were almost 24 thousand plates issued beginning with
plate 1. Plate length again depended on the number of digits, with 1 to 3
using 6 inch plates and 4 and 5 digits using 8 inch.
This is the first image of the newly
Millersville University of Pennsylvania, now on the visitPA base
with a new logo and addition of the words 'of Pennsylvania' added to the legend.
Millersville's plate program dates back to 1994 making this the third generation
of plates. Thank you to
Tom Perri for photographing and
sharing this image. Tom runs the
www.paplates.com/ website which tracks all of PA's plate highs.
Spotted this high number Rutgers University
plate recently. Rutgers is a relative newcomer to PA's litany of plates
only dating back to 2011.
John Clark sent this first generation University of
Scranton plate picture. These plate came out in 1995 with this
plate being the 336th out of 651 issued; the first plate was actually U/S10000.
Since that time plates were issued on the www base, and then around 2006 they
migrated over to the visitPA base. Click the link above to see all the
For some (maybe all) of the first generation
military reserve plates, there were two versions of the sample plates.
Some had three zeros and some had four. The 3-digit U.S. Air
Force Reserve plate is a new image.
These first generation
Veterans of Foreign Wars plates have been added to the display
section for current plates. It appears that some 2500 of the yellow on blue plates were issued since their inception in
1984 until they were replaced in 2001 on the www base. To see more plates click the link above.
This very nice pair of 1933 Dealer plates was provided by Bob Connison.
Bob has provided quite a few more Dealer plates, many of which will help to fill
gaps. The series shown here likely ran from X1 to X9999, then there were
also additional combinations of 0X, 0X0, 0X00 and 0X000.
Check back over the next few weeks to see
additional Dealer plates from Bob. Some of the plates are shown
as a stacked pair, others are shown as individual images, depending on
how they were posed when photographed.
plates saw some big changes. Gone was the 'X' designator for Dealer, and
in it place is the return of the word Dealer. The word Dealer was last
seen in 1923; however, the 'X' has been a part of Dealer plates every year since
1911. Serial sequence could be all numeric or alpha-numeric but X was not
used. 1, 2, 3 and 4 character all numeric were issued, then a single alpha
character followed by 1, 2 or 3 numeric characters were used. All plates
are believed to be 6" x 10". This pair was provided by Bob Connison.
This pair of Commercial Motorcycle plate
images was provided by Harry Campbell. Harry, with help from Todd Mickinak
has proved quite a few images of older Motorcycle plates which will be posted
over the next several weeks. The '38 plate had been posted in the past,
but this is a nicer image. Commercial Motorcycle plates were issued
for 12 years from 1938 until 1949, except 1943 when metal tabs were issued.
It appears that plate formatting was the same from year to year with the
exception of the color rotation which was the same as passenger plates, and
the 2-digit year, which was embossed as part of the COMM over MC over PA.
The expiration date was added
in 1941 as seen above. All plates measured 4½" by 8". In 1950 the
Commercial Motorcycle registration fee was reduced from $5 to $4 eliminating the
need for this plate type. Plate serial numbers ranged
from 1 to under 1000.
LEGISLATION — The State Senate
Approves Special License Plate for Active Duty Military.
Senate Bill 1155
would establish a special license plate for members of the United States
Armed Forces including members of the reserves, and Pennsylvania National Guard.
The bill now goes to the State House for their consideration.
In other legislative matters, House Bill 1154 which, if passed, would repeal the elimination of
Registration Stickers. The bill was passed in the State House and is now
in the State Senate.
This is the first image of a Combat Action Badge
with the serial number format. The image was provided by Kyle Kuser.
Two other images of this plate type have been posted, both in a personalized /
vanity format. This plate type has been available since November of 2014.
appears that the Eagles
Youth Partnership plate may no longer be available. I received
an inquiry from a Jeff H. who noticed that there is no mention of the plate on
their website, and the email link for the plate program is no longer functional.
These plates have been around since late 2010 with some 780 plates issued at a
cost of $75 per plate. The plate shown here is courtesy of
Bufalini snapped this first image of a Steel Worker
plate on the visitPA base. This was a street shot and the plate is wearing
an awful frame. Note the use of the colored logo. This series
appears to have started at S/W05500 as plate S/W05498 was still on the www base.
The Bronze Star
plate picture on the far left was snapped back late 2014, however, the plate is
still the reported high. That image is from Ryan Battin. The plate
on the near left is a recent photo of a Bronze Star vanity. Brendan Sherry
suggests that it stands for the 219th Mechanized Infantry Division.
This is likely the second Collectible Vehicle
plate issued from the general issue group which began at CV0100. If you recall from last week's post,
there was a reserve issue of the plates under 0100, and that those who were
instrumental in getting the law in place for this plate were eligible to receive
numbers below 0100. A plate check shows about 8 of those plates in use,
and the numbers are spread out. Thanks to Arthur Levine for the image.
First let me say that the colors have not
Disabled Veteran image is a little overexposed. It is also the
current high. You may have noticed that the standard Disabled Veteran
plates are still on the fully embossed base, while Disabled Veteran vanities are
partially flat screened with the DV- prefix being screened. The screened
base also has the state on the top and Disabled veteran on the bottom, both flat
screened. Click the link above to see more examples.
CORRECTION — Last week I posted these two Official Use Only
images but had the information backwards. The far left plate is a '65 -
'70 issue while the near left plate is a '71 to '76 issue. Thanks to Chuck
Harrington for the correction.
These first generation
plates have been added to the display section for current plates. It appears that
almost 750 of the yellow on blue plates were issued since their inception in
1987 until they were replaced in 2000. Since that time less than 200 have
been issued on the www base. As I have stated in the past, with so many
newer, more attractive veteran plates with color graphics, these Navy Reserve
plates have lost their appeal. To see more plates click the link above.
plates are from around 1984, with this series being issued until the XA series
came out around 1993. The Trailer plate on the far left is a rare find,
and was provided thanks to Clayton Moore. This plate was formatted with
PENNSYLVANIA on top and TRAILER on the bottom, while most of the run up to
TZ-99999 had TRAILER on the top and PENNSYLVANIA on the bottom. It is
unknown how long the run was, but by TL-16365 or below the change was made.
The source of the near left plate is unknown. If anyone has any plates or
images that would narrow down the changeover point, it would be appreciated.
Bob Connison, who has been so helpful with
dealer plates in the past, has been kind enough to dig out a large group of older dealer
plates starting with this pair of 1932 Dealer
plates. Unfortunately at the time PA plates lacked an identifying legend,
and with varying numbers of digits and location of the 'X', one may ponder the
authenticity of any X-rated plate. The consensus among a number of plate
enthusiasts is that this is a Dealer plate.
Check back over the next few weeks for great
pictures from Bob.
Chad Gage provided this very nice image of a
Format 2 Classic
Motorcycle plate. Format 2 is believed to start at C/L0200,
and so far this is the lowest number with photo-documentation. Numbers
below C/L0200 are considered Format 1 and use a different PENNA font; however,
only 1 such plates has been photographed, that being C/L0103. Additional
photos of plates from C/L0000 to C/L0200 are needed.
Jeff Lawson pointed out a recent eBay
auction in which the seller explained some of the history of Collectible Vehicle
plates. The seller explained that there was a reserve issue of the first
100 plates, and that those who were instrumental in getting the law in place
were eligible to receive them. A plate check shows about 8 of those plates
in use, and the numbers are spread out. Of the plates shown here, the
plate on the far left is likely a sample while the CV0097 was provided by
Michael Wiener, the provenance of that plate is uncertain. These plates
are also expected to switch to the visitPA family of plates base. That
should help to kill sales.
Arthur Levine spotted this St.
Charles Borromeo Seminary plate recently. It's the first image
of this plate type and is one of only nine such plates. The plates have
been on the street for less than a year.
This personalized NRA Foundation
plate was spotted recently by Brendan Sherry. Most of these organizational
plates, where vanities are permitted, allow up to 5 characters, but in this case
with the 3-character suffix, only 4 additional characters are permitted.
Jeff Lawson provided this screen shot of a
University vanity plate. The Bucknell plate program dates back
SPCA plate picture was provided by Jeff Lawson. This plate
program has been around since 2008 and currently the reported high is 10086P/H.
This Person with
Disability vanity suggests the user suffers from low oxygen.
The picture was provided by Jeff Lawson.
this vanity version of a Disabled Veteran
plate. These plates use a combination flat screened portion, DV-, and the
embossed side, 14QM. Bruce adds that "The 14th Quartermaster Detachment .
. . in Greensburg lost 13 soldiers in a missile attack in the 1991 Gulf War, 25
years ago last month." It's also noteworthy that while the legend and prefix
are flat screened, the plate has not joined the visitPA family of plates look.
This is because the law that authorized this plate also specified the coloring
of the plate.
Also provided by Jeff Lawson is this Vietnam War Veteran
vanity plate. The LLRP likely stands for Long-Range Reconnaissance Patrol.
Here are two Official Use Only
plates with similar formatting except for the reversal of the colors.
There are also variations of these plates without the state in the top border
and there are other variation without any plate legend but with the state seal
both with and without the raised loaf surrounding the seal. According to
Chuck Harrington, the plate on the far left was issued from the '65 to '70 era, the
the near left plate from 71' to '76. The
plate on the far left was provided by Chuck Harrington. Click the link
see other variations.
See correction under 4/17 posting.
This pair of Municipal
plates with an alpha character in the final position shows a low-number earlier
plate with an A suffix, and a much later plates from the current-issue J series.
The early plate picture was provided by
Irazabal. The color difference is due to cameras, lighting, etc.
There were no plates issued with an 'I' suffix. Prior to the alpha suffix,
a 5-digit serial was used followed by -MG in the suffix position. Click
the link above to see more variations.
Arthur Levine spotted this low number PA
Chiropractic Association plate, but could not identify the plate
from a distance. Not surprising since the dealer's plate frame completely
obscures the name of the organization. These plates have been around since
mid-2006. The current high is 00056D/C.
This number 50 NRA Foundation
plate was spotted on the road by Steve Ondik. The high on this plate type
is in the upper 7-hundreds. This 4-digit and 3-letter suffix combination
was the supposedly the result of a favor; however, the formatting is not too
unlike NASCAR plates. See below.
I spotted this the other day, then saw that
I had photographed the same plate back in 2007 with a dealer frame around it.
Anyway this is a NASCAR 18 Bobby
Labonte plate. These were issued only for the 2004 and 2005
racing seasons, but remain renewable. This would have been the 4th plate issued out of 86.
Brendan Sherry spotted this Slippery Rock
University plate back in July of 2014. This plate is still
considered the current high. Slippery Rock began their plate program back
in 2004, so there were no yellow on blue predecessors, and so far no indication
of a move to the visitPA family of plates.
I should have added this U.S.
Coast Guard Reserve plate image with a 2-04 sticker to last week's
Coast Guard Reserve update. It's likely I snapped this picture back
in 2003. As stated last week, there are unexplainable gaps in plate
numbering. Also, there are 4 plate images between this website and
Tom Perri's. All range from 1104 to 1127. In looking further at the
numbers there are only 7 plates between 1000 and 1099, and 20 plates between
1100 and 1137, for a total of 27 plates.
John Fedorchak sent images of this 1975 Dealer plate
with a natural PA0000 sticker.