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License Plate Gallery

The Wisconsin Pages:

Heavy Farm Truck

Through 1966, heavy farm trucks bore plates identical to those of their lighter counterparts; aside from the addition of a weight class code letter to the serial. Light and heavy farm trucks continued to wear similar plates from 1967 to 1978, although Heavy Farm Truck plates retained a non-reflective background. Since 1978, however, Heavy Farm Truck plates have instead adhered to the formats, colors, and replacement cycles of Insert Truck plates. These later issues also expire the following February of the contemporary insert truck and trailer plates they correspond to.

[Wisconsin 1951 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1954 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1955 heavy farm]

(at)8

[Wisconsin 1957 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1958 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1959 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1960 heavy farm]

(at)8

[Wisconsin 1961 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1962 heavy farm]

(at)8

[Wisconsin 1963 heavy farm]

(at)8

[Wisconsin 1965 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1969 heavy farm]

(at)3

[Wisconsin 1972 heavy farm]

(at)8

[Wisconsin 1973 heavy farm]

Off-center serial (at)8

[Wisconsin 1975 heavy farm]

(at)

[Wisconsin 1978 heavy farm]

Spacing variation (at)1

[Wisconsin 1979 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1982 heavy farm]

(at)1

[Wisconsin 1984 heavy farm]

(at)1

[Wisconsin 1986 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1987 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1989 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1992 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1994 heavy farm]

Bottom letter "F" from this issue on. (e)

[Wisconsin 2008 heavy farm]

Numbers in 30000 block. (at)

[Wisconsin 1995 heavy farm]

(e)

[Wisconsin undated heavy farm]

(at)

[Wisconsin undated heavy farm]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2012 heavy farm]

(at)

Farm Trailer

A scarce type; Farm Trailer plates have been issued since at least 1967.

[Wisconsin 1967 farm trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1973 farm trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1983 farm trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1986 farm trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1989 farm trailer]

(at)4

[Wisconsin 1990 farm trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 2003 farm trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 2007 farm trailer]

(at)3

[Wisconsin 2011 farm trailer]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2009 farm trailer]

(at)

Apportioned

In 1978, Wisconsin entered the International Registration Plan (IRP); a regulatory agreement concerning the apportionment of tax fees between member jurisdictions. By apportioning fees under the agreement, road taxes were proportionally split between states and provinces a given vehicle traveled through; eliminating the need for multiple license plates and reciprocity permits on trucks used for interstate commerce.

Apportioned license plates were issued annually between 1981 and 1998. A fair number of these issues feature unique color schemes.

[Wisconsin 1978 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1981 apportioned]

(JM) (e)

[Wisconsin 1982 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1983 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1984 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1985 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1986 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1987 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1988 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1989 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1990 apportioned]

(at)9

[Wisconsin 1991 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1992 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1993 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1994 apportioned]

(at)7

[Wisconsin 1995 apportioned]

(at)1

[Wisconsin 1996 apportioned]

(T)

[Wisconsin 1997 apportioned]

(at)1

[Wisconsin 1998 apportioned]

(e)

[Wisconsin 2009 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2006/09 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2001 apportioned]

Centered serial (e)

[Wisconsin 2009 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2010 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2012 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2008/09 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2010 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2011 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2009 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2010 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2012 apportioned]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2014 apportioned]

(JM)

Apportioned Trailer

Originally Apportioned license plates were issued to both truck tractors and trailers, with the latter bearing six-digit, all-numeric serials. Long-term issues later appeared. The issuance of these plates evidently ceased in 2001 when the last state requiring apportioning for trailers, California, dropped the requirement.

[Wisconsin 1978 apportioned trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1981 apportioned trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1982 apportioned trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1984 apportioned trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1986 apportioned trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1988 apportioned trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1989 apportioned trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 2001 apportioned trailer]

Issued 1990 (at)3

[Wisconsin undated apportioned semi trailer]

ca. 1999-2001 (at)

[Wisconsin undated apportioned semi trailer]

(at)

Semi Trailer

Semi Trailer plates have followed a number of different formats over the years. "P" series plates were issued to private carriers, while "C" plates were issued to contract carriers and "R" plates (or plates with no prefix at all, such as the stickered 1971 example below) were issued to rentals.

[Wisconsin 1960 semi trailer]

EXP right of bolt (e)

[Wisconsin 1960 semi trailer]

EXP left of bolt, plus overflow series (e)

[Wisconsin 1962 semi trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1963 semi trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1966 semi trailer]

(at)3

[Wisconsin 1969 semi trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1970 semi trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1971 semi trailer]

(at)2

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

Rental trailer (at)8

[Wisconsin 1972 semi trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1974 semi trailer]

Crude dies (at)3

[Wisconsin 1974 semi trailer]

Normal dies (e)

[Wisconsin 1976 semi trailer]

(at)

[Wisconsin 1978 semi trailer]

(at)

[Wisconsin 1981 semi trailer]

(at)

[Wisconsin 1983 semi trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1984 semi trailer]

Large prefix (e)

[Wisconsin 1987 semi trailer]

Small prefix (e)

[Wisconsin 1986 semi trailer]

No slot (e)

A permanent issue was introduced in late 1987; starting at serial 200001. Narrow dies were introduced somewhere between the 343 and 346 series, while reflectorization appears to have been inconspicuously added in the 400000s.

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

ca. 1987-94 (at)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

(at)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

With New Jersey sticker? (e)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

(at)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

ca. 1994-99 (at)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

(at)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

(at)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

ca. 1999-2000 - 3M sheeting (at)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

ca. 2000-06 - Avery sheeting (at)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

(at)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

ca. 2006- - 3M sheeting (at)

[Wisconsin undated semi trailer]

(at)

Camping Trailer

The Camping Trailer plate was a relatively short-lived class, issued from 1978 to 1997. Although more similar to passenger plates in format than anything else, these plates respected the same colors and replacement cycles as Insert Truck plates.

[Wisconsin 1979 camping trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1994 camping trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1997 camping trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1995 camping trailer]

(e)

"A"/"ZA" Trailer

"ZA" represents a deceptively uncommon class: Only the lightest trailers of 3000 lbs or less qualify for the plates, and since registration of such vehicles is strictly optional, these plates tend to be few and far between on the roads. These plates are also reportedly issued to fleets of light rental trailers, typically in conjunction with long-term six-year validations.

Prior to 1978 these plates represented the "A" class of the Insert Trailer variety, and in fact it's a bit unclear when exactly "A" Trailer and Insert Trailer plates started to have slightly different designs. Because of this, some early non-"A" Trailer plates are included in the partial run below.

[Wisconsin 1929 trailer]

Not an "A," and not much room for the serial! (e)

[Wisconsin 1933-34 trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1934-35 trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1938-39 trailer]

Not an "A," but I'll file it here. (e)

[Wisconsin 1945-46 trailer]

Again, not an "A," but I'll file it here... (e)

[Wisconsin 1952 trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1953 trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1965 trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1971 A trailer]

Partial-length groove (e)

[Wisconsin 1972 A trailer]

Full-length groove (SD)

[Wisconsin 1973 A trailer]

Weird groove stubs (e)

[Wisconsin 1974 A trailer]

"74" at right (e)

[Wisconsin 1975 A trailer]

"74" at left (at)2

[Wisconsin 1981 ZA trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1985 ZA trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1987 ZA trailer]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1994 ZA trailer]

Issued 1988 (e)

[Wisconsin 2000 ZA trailer]

Issued 1994 (at)

[Wisconsin 2012 ZA trailer]

(at)

Mobile Home/RV Trailer

I assume that the "Cabin" type was a precursor to Mobile Home plates.

[Wisconsin 1940-41 cabin]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1947 cabin]

Small plates used due to WWII metal rationing concerns. (e)

[Wisconsin 1948 cabin]

1948-50 (at)9

[Wisconsin 1951 cabin]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1952 cabin]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1954 cabin]

(at)4

Mobile Home plates (not to be confused with Motor Home plates) were first issued in 1955 and bore an "MH" prefix from 1958 to 2008. The colors and replacement cycles sometimes correlate with other truck and trailer plates, but just as often are unique.

[Wisconsin 1955 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1957 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1958 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1959 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1960 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1961 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1961 mobile home]

Overflow series (e)

[Wisconsin 1962 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1963 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1963 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1964 mobile home]

(at)3

[Wisconsin 1966 mobile home]

On a long-abandoned trailer (at)

[Wisconsin 1967 mobile home]

First variation (e)

[Wisconsin 1969 mobile home]

Second variation (e)

[Wisconsin 1969 mobile home]

Third variation (e)

[Wisconsin 1970 mobile home]

Debossed "70" (e)

[Wisconsin 1970 mobile home]

Embossed "70" (e)

[Wisconsin 1974 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1985 mobile home]

Mismatched 7s! (at)

[Wisconsin 1990 mobile home]

(at)1

[Wisconsin 1989 mobile home]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1990 mobile home]

Late variation (e)

[Wisconsin 2009 mobile home]

1992-94 (at)

[Wisconsin 2010 mobile home]

(at)

[Wisconsin 1998 mobile home]

1994-95; narrow stacked letters (at)4

[Wisconsin 2010 mobile home]

1995-99; typical condition (at)

[Wisconsin 2011 mobile home]

1999-2008; reflectorized (at)

[Wisconsin 2011 mobile home]

Reflectorized (at)

[Wisconsin 2012 mobile home]

Reflectorized (at)

[Wisconsin 2010 mobile home]

Reflectorized (at)

[Wisconsin 2010 mobile home]

Reflectorized (at)

[Wisconsin 2011 mobile home]

Reflectorized (at)

In 2008, a graphic base design was introduced and the type caption was changed to "RV Trailer." These plates are only issued to new registrations, and earlier "Mobile Home" plates remain in concurrent use.

[Wisconsin 2012 RV trailer]

(at)

Permit Reciprocity

Permit Reciprocity plates (sometimes misidentified as Pro Rate plates, per the PR prefix) were actually supplemental permits issued to out-of-state commercial vehicles. Such plates were discontinued in the 1970s in favor of other means of identification, which were eventually obsolesced altogether with the advent of Apportioned plates. "Canadian Reciprocity" plates, with a CR prefix, were also issued once upon a time.

[Wisconsin 1957 permit reciprocity]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1959 permit reciprocity]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1961 permit reciprocity]

(at)2

[Wisconsin 1962 permit reciprocity]

(at)2

[Wisconsin 1965 permit reciprocity]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1966 permit reciprocity]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1967 permit reciprocity]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1968 permit reciprocity]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1969 permit reciprocity]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1970 permit reciprocity]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1971 permit reciprocity]

(e)

Tax Only

Tax Only plates represented yet another form of supplemental permit for out-of-state trucks; chronologically overlapping with Permit Reciprocity plates and issued primarily in the 1970s. Many baseplates were undated and relied on insert stickers for validation, making unissued examples difficult to date.

[Wisconsin 1962 tax only]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1967 tax only]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1969 tax only]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1973 tax only]

1973 (e)

[Wisconsin 1974 tax only]

1974 (e)

[Wisconsin 1975 tax only]

1975 (e)

[Wisconsin 1976 tax only]

(SD)

Special-UX

This scarce type was reportedly issued to trucks and trailers with specific types of permanently-mounted special equipment, qualifying for reduced-fee registrations.

[Wisconsin 1958 special-UX]

(at)3

[Wisconsin 1959 special-UX]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1961 special-UX]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1965 special-UX]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1974 special-UX]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1981 special-UX]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1983 special-UX]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1985 special-UX]

(at)

[Wisconsin 1987 special-UX]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1991 special-UX]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1992 special-UX]

(e)

[Wisconsin 2004 special-UX]

(e)

Special-Z

Like Special-UX license plates, the only-slightly-more-common Special-Z class encompasses special equipment. According to the dusty pages of the Wisconsin statutes database, this confusing class is (or was) intended for "grading, ditching, excavating, or hauling vehicles" that are "operated empty, or used exclusively in transporting the equipment of the owner to or from a certain location over the highways, when such operation at the location is exclusively for grading ditching or excavating or when such equipment is used exclusively for seasonal hauling of carnival rides and equipment." Although the statute is presumably still on the books, issuance of both Special-UX and Special-Z plates appears to have ceased in 2004.

[Wisconsin 1968-69 special-Z]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1967 special-Z]

Variation (SO)

[Wisconsin 1973 special-Z]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1981 special-Z]

(at)2

[Wisconsin 1983 special-Z]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1987 special-Z]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1989 special-Z]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1991 special-Z]

(e)

[Wisconsin 1994 special-Z]

(e)

[Wisconsin 2008 special-Z]

Narrow dies (e)

[Wisconsin 1998 special-Z]

(at)

Special-X

Special-X isn't specifically a truck or trailer class, but due to convenience and ambiguity I'm filing it here. Special-X plates are (or have been) issued to a wide variety of "specific use" vehicles, qualifying for five-year registrations at a reduced fee. So far I've spotted them on blood donation vehicles and volunteer fire department equipment, to name a few.

[Wisconsin 1972 special-X]

Partial-length groove (e)

[Wisconsin 1973 special-X]

Full-length groove (e)

[Wisconsin 1974 special-X]

(e)

[Wisconsin 2008 special-X]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2008 special-X]

(at)

[Wisconsin 2013 special-X]

(BA)

[Wisconsin 2013 special-X]

(at)

Low Speed

Low Speed plates are issued to "neighborhood" electric cars and other four-wheeled vehicles having a top speed around 25 mph. Fees and expiration intervals for these are identical to those of motorcycle plates.

[Wisconsin 2012 low speed]

(at)

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Last update November 5, 2013.