GENERAL
INFORMATION
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General Information: Samples

SAMPLES
Sample plates were originally produced by companies hoping to win a contract from a state to manufacture all of that state's plates.  Examples of these "salesman's" samples are known from Maryland as early as 1910, the first issue, and are now considered to be prototype plates.  By the early 1920's, most states were ordering samples in sufficient quantities to exchange with each of the other states and provinces and send out to law enforcement agencies and later, collectors.  Typically, sample plates bear a number consisting of all zeroes, such as 000-000, the word SAMPLE, or an "impossible" number.  New Hampshire plates were blank from 1923 to 1932 and often doubled in use as replacement plates with numbers painted on.
 
This table lists the earliest known sample of each jurisdiction (and years not verified):
 
AL 1927   (28,44,45)                MO 1924   (32,45)
AK 1923   (24,25,26,27)             MT 1923   (24,26,27,44,45)
AZ 1923   (24)                      NE 1925   (28)
AR 1924   (25,26)                   NV 1925   (44)
CA 1925   (42)                      NH 1923   (24,25,27)             
CO 1920   (21,22,23,43)             NJ 1924   (25)
CT 1926                             NM 1920   (21,22,23,25)
DE 1926   (27)                      NY 1927   (28)
DC 1927   (28,46)                   NC 1924   (25,26,D27,28)
FL 1926                             ND 1920   (21,22,23,26,31)       
GA 1926   (44)                      OH 1923   (24,25)
HI 1926                             OK 1926   (42,75Z)
ID 1926                             OR 1924
IL 1925   (43)                      PA 1924   (25,44)
IN 1926   (29)                      RI 1923                          
IA 1924   (28,50)                   SC 1923   (25)
KS 1924                             SD 1924
KY 1922   (23,24)                   TN 1926
LA 1926   (44,45)                   TX 1923   (24,27,29)
ME 1925                             UT 1923   (24,44)                
MD 1924   (26)                      VT 1925   (44)
MA 1925                             VA 1924   (26,28,57)
MI 1922   (25)                      WA 1923   (24)
MN 1924   (27,28)                   WV 1925
MS 1925   (52#,54#,55S,56S)         WI 1922   (24)                   
WY 1925
PR 1929/30
CZ 1931   (32,34,37,45)           
AB 1927   (28,44)                   ON 1927
BC 1924   (25,28,29)                PE 1928   (29,43)
MB 1927   (28)                      QC 1922   (24,25,43,44,45,46,54)
NB 1928                             SK 1930   (31,32,33,34,42)
NF 1936   (42,43,44,45,47)          YK 1934   (36,42,44)
NS 1928   (29,45)                   NT 1948   (49,50,51,52,57,61,80) 
 
CUMULATIVE NUMBER OF JURISDICTIONS SEEN BY YEAR (U.S. + CANADA):
 
1920    3 +  0   CO,NM,ND
1922    6 +  1   KY,MI,WI,QC
1923   16 +  1   AK,AZ,MT,NH,OH,RI,SC,TX,UT,WA
1924   28 +  2   AR,IA,KS,MD,MN,MO,NJ,NC,OR,PA,SD,VA,BC
1925   38 +  2   CA,IL,ME,MA,MS,NE,NV,VT,WV,WY         
1926   48 +  2   CT,DE,FL,GA,HI,ID,IN,LA,OK,TN
1927   50 +  5   AL,NY,DC,AB,MB,ON
1928   50 +  8   NB,NS,PE
1929   50 +  8   DC,PR                                 
1930   50 +  9   SK
1931   50 +  9   CZ
1934   50 + 10   YK
1936   50 + 11   NF
1948   50 + 12   NT                                 
 
 
VERIFY
1926 - AK,AR,MD,MT,NC,ND,VA
1927 - AK,DE,MN,MT,NH,NC,TX
1928 - AL,DC,IA,MN,NE,NY,NC,VA,AB,BC,MB
1929 - IN,TX,BC,NS,PE
1930 - IN
1931 - ND,SK
1932 - MO,CZ,SK
1933 - SK
1934 - CZ,SK
1936 - YK
1937 - CZ
1942 - CA,OK,NF,SK
1943 - CO,IL,NF,PE,QC
1944 - AL,GA,LA,MT,NV,PA,UT,VT,AB,NF,QC,YK
1945 - AL,LA,MO,MT,CZ,NF,NS,QC
1946 - DC,QC
1947 - NF
1949 - NT
1950 - IA,NT
1951 - NT
1952 - NT
1954 - QC
1957 - VA,NT
1961 - NT
1980 - NT