There was enough metal supply to manufacture plates (in singles, not pairs) for new registrations. Non-passenger vehicles had their class type spelled out, and were not county-coded. Remove or invalidate the month and year tabs, bend the plates so they can't be used on a vehicle, and recycle them so they can't be confused with a valid Washington license plate. As registrations lapsed over time, older dead numbers were recycled by the state. Exempt license plates. A Brief History of Washington State License Plates 1905. Please contact me! Embossed white serial on lavender plate with border line; "WN" at left and vertical "X17" at right. All images are items from my collection or scanned images of historic photos I own, unless noted otherwise. Find out how to get customized "vanity" license plates. Washington State License Plates Barbara Jo Birt offers a brief history and photos of old plates from the Evergreen State. After the plate mill was destroyed late in 1953, any additional plates needed before the end of the calendar year had to be sourced from the alternate supplier in Oregon. Eventually it will be an illustrated presentation of the many interesting aspects of the history of Washington state license plates. Click Here for our Washington State Plate Gallery. Standard plate issuance resumed for 1945, with the 1942 plates finally coming off bumpers after three years in use. wrote to the Seattle Times: “I am good and peeved because on a trip taken by my husband and me this last summer, back through the South to Kentucky, Ohio, Michigan and back—I am peeved because no one the other side of the Idaho line knew what ‘Wn.” stood for on our car license plate. All of Washington’s license plates until 1925 were embossed with WN and the year of issue. Go. An updated based was introduced in 1982, with the state name screened instead of embossed and the registration number no longer being coded by county. AN for Asotin, SJ for San Juan). Revalidated for 1946 with windshield stickers. For over a decade, the Old license Farm has a developed a well-established reputation with collector/vintage car enthusiasts throughout the State of Washington. Registrants provided their own license plates for display until 1915, when the state began to issue plates.[1]. The state name briefly reverted back to the old design in 1980. As registration volumes continued to increase, the process of issuing plates centrally from Olympia became too costly and inefficient, and in 1935 Washington adopted the practice used in many other states and implemented a county code system. The design changed very little over the next two years. With age, the blue paint tends to fade to black. For example, Delaware and Rhode Island were formerly able to use six-digit all-numeric serials due to their low respective populations; both now use five-digit serials, with Delaware using a letter and four digits, and Rhode Island using two letters and three digits. With the adoption of staggered registrations, a month sticker was added and validity was determined from the date of original registration. The DMV issued the first metal plates, with blue background and white letters. “At night headlights reflecting on the plate practically obliterate the numerals, the unpainted aluminum having the same characteristics as a mirror held to catch the sun’s rays,” complained the Spokane Safety Commissioner after the plates had been on the road only two weeks. Plates from 1916 through 1920 were issued on a March-to-March basis. “X” marks the plate: introduction of vehicle class codes. 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