New York

New York License Plate History

New York is one of the first states which manufactured license plates in large quantities, after starting small in 1902.  The popularity of motor vehicles, combined with the high population and wealth, enabled New York to become the first state to issue 1,000,000 license plates, though California reached this milestone later the same year. The original New York license plates were porcelain, then riveted numbers on metal, but were soon changed to embossed metal in 1913. The state abbreviation "NY" was always present on New York license plates. In 1913 New York also began to emboss the year on each license plate. The metal used was steel and these disintegrated quickly in New York’s salt laden winter streets. New York state issued new license plates yearly, with the year of issue embossed on the plate.

From 1920 the New York license plate was approximately 5 x 14 inches. In 1929, New York’s license plate size was changed to 6 x 14 inches. This size was used until 1957 when the state of New York adopted the Society of Automotive Engineers standard for license plates: 6 x 12 inches with 4 standard locations for screw holes.

In 1939 and 1940 in honor of the event, New York issued a license plate embossed with "NEW YORK’S WORLD’S FAIR".  The state did the same in 1964 when a plate was issued embossed with "NY WORLD’S FAIR" (the same plate was used in 1965 with a vertical decal issued and applied to plate on right hand corner). "NY THE EMPIRE STATE" was first embossed on New York license plates in 1951 and continued until 1963. New York issued its first license plate with retro-reflective foil from 3M in 1974, the color of the plate was reflective golden orange, or a deep reflective yellow.

The year 1986 was historic for New York license plates, the first year the state issued license plates with graphics. The Statue of Liberty was printed in red and the state printed in a deep blue, in addition to two horizontal red lines printed above and below the top and bottom mounting holes. The color of the retro-reflective foil was reflective white.

In 2001, New York issued another license plate with artwork printed on reflective white, on which the slogan "THE EMPIRE STATE" was re-introduced. The most unpopular license plate from New York was issued in 2010 in deep reflective yellow and deep blue. Car collectors despise this design and question the issuing authority's choice of colors and graphic design. Custom plates are not embossed with the exception of the border. This is not an attractive license plate design and the state may want to listen to New Yorkers and change this “ghastly” deep reflective yellow and deep blue quickly.


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Jason - Columbus, Ohio

I got your plates today. Wow, they are fantastic! They look very professionally done and the color matches perfectly. I couldn't ask for any better. It was done exactly as I had drawn it up. Hats off to you.If you twisted my arm and forced me to say anything less than "perfection" I'd say I wouldn't mind if the metal were twice () as thick. It does seem a bit thinner than what I had expected.These custom plates rock! Thanks a bunch. :)Jason

Bob - Dover, Massachusetts

Elmer - Just got my Swedish plate. I love it - my wife loves it! I get more pleasure out of my purchases from you than just about any other thing I can think of. Another great job - thanks!Bob

Dave

My 5th plate from you over the years (019320, A-1940, C-1940, 1954STU and now 32P-KUP). The latest plate looks great, took less than a week to get it,is already mounted on the pickup and now all I have to do is finish building the rest of the project. Great deal!

Elaine - Hollywood, Florida

THANK YOU!!!I received the new plate I ordered today and you included the replacement letters for the broken plate. You are WONDERFUL!!!!!!Elaine

Corey - Hobbs, New Mexico

I wanted to let you know we got in the custom plates the other day.AWESOME is one word that described them.Thanks,Corey C

Allen - Folsom, California

Hello,Just here to say many thanks for the job well done. I am very happy with my San Marino and Italian license plates. Here are some new pics taken yesterday from my 1988 Lamborghini Countach showing all the good work from licenseplates.tvSincerely,Allen M.

BARBARA RAIRIGH

My brother just loved the license plate. He was never so happy.He said you really did a fantastic job!!!!I know you really went out of your way!!Thank you from the bottom of my heart. It made me really happy to put a smile on his face. Have a good Thanksgiving and thank you soooooooo very much!!!!! - Barbara

John R - Franklin, NJ

Folks, My plate arrived today and it is simply gorgeous.Thanks for taking the time to repeatedly Email back and forth about this, and to spend so long on the phone with me getting it exactly right. Its a rare event these days to receive exactly what you hoped and paid for. Im certain well do business again.

Andre -

Thanks for the plate!I received it yesterday and it looks fantastic, you guys did a great job!

Luke - Sunny Isles Beach, Florida

I love the work you all did, quality & speed......feel free to publish them!

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