A Website for Porcelain License Plate Collectors & Enthusiasts
TOTAL KNOWN PORCELAIN VARIETIES: 3
I: PRE-STATES / CITY & COUNTY PLATES
Illinois is a state not known for porcelain, and yet there remain three small
surviving plates - each of which is unique - that seem to defy explanation.
Alton is a city on the Missouri River on the Illinois-Missouri border. It had a
population of about 25,000 when it apparently decided to issue porcelain license
plates in 1922. What these plates were used for is unknown. Most likely, they
licensed some sort of vendor, rather than being a general requirement for the
city's vehicles. Deepening the mystery even further, there are two known
surviving plates from the city, each completely different in color, and yet each
dated the same year. For years, only two Alton plates were known, with the
highest number being #280. In 2007, however, another of the black & white
versions showed up on EBAY with the number #1578! Is is possible that there
were as many as 1,600 of these licenses issued?
Chicago is the largest city in Illinois, and it certainly would come as no surprise
that officials decided to issue porcelain license plates. However, this does not
seem to be the case. There is no evidence that vehicles in the city were ever
required to carry porcelains. Rather, the one porcelain plate from the city seems
to be an anomaly - a "roofer" plate that may turn out not to be an automobile
license at all. The absence of corner or slot holes lends credence to those who
feel this was never meant for use on a vehicle. With a very early date of 1908, this
plate is a real mystery.
II: STATE-ISSUED PASSENGER PLATES
III: STATE-ISSUED NON-PASSENGER PLATES
||3" x 8"
||3" x 8"
||4" x 8"