Kansas County Codes
Numbers were used to designate counties from 1930-1950. Two letter abbreviations were used from 1951-present.
1 WY Wyandotte 22 NO Neosho 43 JW Jewell 64 EW Ellsworth 85 KW Kiowa
2 SG Sedgwick 23 MN Marion 44 CF Coffey 65 OT Ottawa 86 ME Meade
3 SN Shawnee 24 AL Allen 45 DP Doniphan 66 LC Lincoln 87 SD Sheridan
4 CR Crawford 25 BR Brown 46 JF Jefferson 67 BA Barber 88 GO Gove
5 MG Montgomery 26 MP McPherson 47 GE Geary 68 EK Elk 89 GY Gray
6 RN Reno 27 WL Wilson 48 RC Rice 69 PN Pawnee 90 CM Comanche
7 LV Leavenworth 28 HV Harvey 49 LN Linn 70 RO Rooks 91 CA Clark
8 CL Cowley 29 OS Osage 50 SM Smith 71 FI Finney 92 SV Stevens
9 BU Butler 30 RL Riley 51 HP Harper 72 WO Woodson 93 HG Hodgeman
10 CK Cherokee 31 MI Miami 52 AN Anderson 73 RH Rush 94 MT Morton
11 LB Labette 32 GW Greenwood 53 PR Pratt 74 DC Decatur 95 LG Logan
12 SU Sumner 33 BT Barton 54 MR Morris 75 NS Ness 96 SC Scott
13 LY Lyon 34 NM Nemaha 55 MC Mitchell 76 GH Graham 97 LE Lane
14 SA Saline 35 FO Ford 56 OB Osborne 77 RA Rawlins 98 KE Kearny
15 AT Atchison 36 CD Cloud 57 KM Kingman 78 TH Thomas 99 WA Wallace
16 DG Douglas 37 WS Washington 58 PL Phillips 79 ED Edwards 100 HM Hamilton
17 BB Bourbon 38 EL Ellis 59 SF Stafford 80 SH Sherman 101 HS Haskell
18 DK Dickinson 39 PT Pottawatomie 60 RS Russell 81 CS Chase 102 WH Wichita
19 JO Johnson 40 RP Republic 61 NT Norton 82 CN Cheyenne 103 GT Grant
20 MS Marshall 41 CY Clay 62 WB Wabaunsee 83 TR Trego 104 ST Stanton
21 FR Franklin 42 JA Jackson 63 CQ Chautauqua 84 SW Seward 105 GL Greeley
Kansas Car History
On July 1, 1913, the state of Kansas began requiring license plates for automobiles. For the first nine years, Kansas license plates were undated. 1913 through 1920 plates are identified by the position of the letters "KAN" and by the color combination. From 1921 through 1976, dated plates were issued each year with the exception of 1943, when an unpainted metal tab was used to validate the 1942 plate. Tabs were also used in 1952 and 1953 to validate the 1951 plate. From 1977 through 1980, stickers were used to validate the 1976 base plate. New base plates were issued in 1981, 1989, 1995, 2002 and 2007 with stickers used for all other years.
From 1913 through 1929, there was no county designation on Kansas license plates. Kansas began county coding in 1930, assigning each county a number from 1 through 105 based on the 1930 population census. The most populated county, Wyandotte, was assigned #1 and the least populated county, Greeley, was assigned #105. In 1951, the county number designation was replaced with a two letter county abbreviation embossed into the plate. If you are not sure what number or two letter code was assigned to a particular county, go to the "Kansas County Codes" section of the website.
Kansas Truck History
From 1913 through 1920, trucks and cars used the same license plate. In 1921, Kansas began issuing truck plates. Truck plates were identified with a "T" prefix up through 1950 with the exception of 1924 when "truck" was spelled out on the plate. From 1951 through 1980, "truck" was spelled out vertically between the two-letter county code and the registration number. Like car plates, new plates for trucks were issued every year with the exception of 1943, 1952, and 1953 when metal tabs were used. 1943 truck tabs used a "T" prefix like regular truck plates but 1952 and 1953 tabs had no truck identification on them. 1975 was the last year of annually issued plates. From 1976 through 1979, truck plates were validated with stickers. In 1980, a new base plate was issued with "TK" in the upper left corner to designate a truck plate. Stickers were used on this base from 1981 through 1988. New base plates were issued in 1989, 1995 and 2002 with stickers used all other years.
Starting around 1932, Kansas began issuing tonnage weight attachments which were attached to the regular truck plate. These attachments matched the color of the truck plate for each year and came in various weights. Beginning in 1956, these plates switched from a ton designation to the letter "M' and ranged from 6M to 24+M sizes. The last year these attachments were used was 1960. These attachments were replaced in 1961 in favor of stickers.
Starting in 1956, truck plates were broken down into several categories including regular, farm, local and 6000 mile. Metal attachments bearing the words "regular", "farm", "local" and "6000 mile" were used to identify which category of truck. The colors matched those of the truck plate of that year. These were used through 1960 as well. They were replaced in 1961 with stickers.
Kansas Motorcycle History
On July 1, 1913, the state of Kansas began requiring motorcycles to be registered. Like automobiles, motorcycle plates were not dated until 1921. The position of the "KAN" and the color combination are used to identify the year. The 1913 plate had slanted characters so the plate could be mounted either vertically or horizontally. Kansas motorcycle plates used a vertical format from 1914 through 1929. Beginning in 1930, a horizontal format was used and Kansas motorcycle plates have been horizontal every since.
Kansas motorcycle plates were not county coded until 1961. The word "cycle" was used beginning in 1961 as well. New plates were issued every year through 1975. The 1975 Kansas motorcycle base plates were validated using stickers from 1976 through 1979. In 1980, a new plate was issued and was validated with stickers through 1988.
Kansas Dealer History
Dealer license plates are issued to car dealerships. Dealer plates were first issued in 1913 for both car and motorcycle dealers. Early dealers were given multiple identical plates with the same number. Beginning in 1930 dealer plates were given a suffix letter to distinguish individual plates. Suffix letters started at "A" and went through "Z". After Z the next suffix was AA, then AB through AZ. Officially dealer plates are not allowed to be used on antique vehicles.
Kansas Sample History
Sample plates were originally created to provide law enforcement and other interested parties an example of a current Kansas license plate. Later on, sample plates became available for purchase by the general public through the D.M.V. The earliest known example of a sample plate is from 1924. Sample plates are essentially not able to be registered to antique vehicles.
Kansas Trailer History
Trailers over 2000 pounds in Kansas are required to be registered. Kansas has issued several different types of trailer plates throughout its history. The first year trailer plates were issued is 1930. Beginning sometime in the 1930's through 1960 metal weight tabs were used as well. They were replaced by a sticker beginning in 1961.