JANUARY, 2011 - UNDATED NEW YORK, NY LICENSED JUNK DEALER
This undated porcelain showed up on EBAY in January, marking the first and only
porcelain license plate of any kind known from New York City. The fact that it is
round is also distinctive, becoming only the 11th jurisdiction known from all of
North America to have issued a round porcelain.
FEBRUARY, 2011 - 1928-29 PROVIDENCE, RI LICENSED HACKNEY CARRIAGE
Dug up by somebody doing some gardening, this little Providence plate is
unremarkable in many ways, as there are nearly 20 different porcelains known
from that city. What makes it interesting, however, is that it is the earliest
Hackney version known, predating the next earliest surviving example by 2 years.
FEBRUARY, 2011 - UNDATED PLANT CITY, FL
New Florida porcelains show up extremely rarely. In fact, when a digger turned
this Plant City porcelain up, it became the first new Florida porcelain to surface
since the summer of 2009. Not only is this a previously unknown plate, but it is
from a jurisdiction not known to have ever issued porcelains - until now!
FEBRUARY, 2011 - 1915 UNKNOWN JITNEY
The styling of the letters and numbers on this unassuming little EBAY find are
nearly identical to the long run of plates thought to have been issued by
Schenectady, NY, but unlike those plates, this one is greater in height and
shorter in length, suggesting it might hail from a different jurisdiction.
FEBRUARY, 2011 - 1913 KANSAS CITY, MO MOTORCYCLE
Kansas City motorcycle plates are impossibly rare. For decades, the only known
examples were a single 1916 and a single 1920. However, in 2004 a 1912 showed
up on EBAY and now, seven years later, a 1913 has surfaced - suggesting that
there are probably 1911, 1914 and 1915 cycles out there to be found as well!
FEBRUARY, 2011 - 1924-25 FALL RIVER, MA LICENSED BUS
Although there had been a 1921-22 Fall River Motor Bus porcelain known for
many years, this new red plate surprised collectors who had no idea any other
years existed. Interestingly, the presence of the two plates surely indicates that
there are 1922-23 and 1923-24 porcelains still out there to be found!
MAY, 2011 - 1913 SCHENECTADY, NY LICENSED GROWER
The latest in the seemingly endless line of plates that were issued to various
classes of vehicle in Schenectady between about 1907 and 1935, this plate, which
showed up on EBAY, is the first known plate to feature the term "Grower." It
becomes the 36th different known variety of these distinctive long porcelains.
JULY, 2011 - UNDATED OVALO, TX
The first new Texas porcelain kit plate to show up in nine months, this Ovalo plate
becomes the 89th different jurisdiction from which Texas porcelains are known.
These owner-provided plates were not actually county or city issued, but rather
were a way of personalizing one's otherwise bland number plate.
JULY, 2011 - 1919 HAWAII COUNTY, HI MOTORCYCLE
Prior to this plate showing up, the only known motorcycle plates from Hawaii
County were two surviving examples from 1918. Just like these 1918 plates, this
1919 is double-sided and is manufactured in the same colors as the embossed
passenger plates issued by the County that year.
AUGUST, 2011 - 1931 LONG ISLAND MOTOR PARKWAY GOLF CLUB PERMIT
Discovered amongst a remarkable hoard of 13 Motor Parkway porcelains, this
nondescript white & blue plate is significant because it fills the last remaining
void in the run of Parkway porcelains between 1924 and 1937. Collectors knew
that a Golf Permit plate was made for 1931, but none had ever been seen before.
SEPTEMBER, 2011 - 1919 ALAMANCE COUNTY, NC FOR HIRE
This Alamance for Hire plate is an example of the standardized 1918-19 For Hire
plates that appear to have been issued by each of North Carolina's counties. This
is the first new one to surface since a Halifax version showed up in 2007 and is
now the 8th different county documented for these yellow & black bases.
SEPTEMBER, 2011 - 1939-40 WESTFIELD, MA VENDOR
When this fascinating plate showed up on EBAY, it amazed collectors who never
knew porcelains were ever issued from Westfield. Not only is it an odd size and
layout for MA plates, but it is made of extremely thin metal and is notable for
being dated a full decade later than any other known porcelains from the state.
NOVEMBER, 2011 - 1912-13 WORCESTER, MA
Shortly after the Westfield discovery mentioned above, this new Worcester plate
showed up. Found via an advertising campaign in the region, this plate pre-dated
the 1913-14 issues, which collectors had long assumed were the first year of
issue from the city. It is also the only example using a double-year date format.
NOVEMBER, 2011 - 1919 CALDWELL COUNTY, NC FOR HIRE
Just two months after the Alamance plate described above showed up, yet
another of the standardized 1918-19 North Carolina For Hire porcelains surfaced
when I was contacted about this Caldwell example. This is the 9th different
county known to exist on these obscure and hard to find For Hire bases.
DECEMBER, 2011 - UNDATED WELLINGTON, TX
The Wellington tile on this porcelain pre-state is the 90th different known
jurisdiction tile collectors have seen on Texas porcelains. Several porcelain
Texas plates have surfaced in 2011, such as the new Ovalo listed above, as well
as plates from previously known jurisdictions such as Roscoe and Vernon
DECEMBER, 2011 - 1913 NEW BEDFORD & FAIRHAVEN, MA SHELLFISH COMM.
In a year chock full of new Massachusetts discoveries (see Fall River, Westfield &
Worcester above), this little discovery is perhaps the most unusual of all. Dating
to 1913, this New Bedford & Fairhaven Shellfish Commission plate becomes the
8th jurisdiction from Massachusetts now known to have issued porcelains.
A Website for Porcelain License Plate Collectors & Enthusiasts
Gallery - 2011 Discoveries
This page illustrates a handful of some of the more significant discoveries of
2011. For other significant finds of recent years, please visit the following: