Does anyone else still miss the classic blue colored Michigan license plates like I do? When I was a child and we traveled out of state, I always thought it was fun to see all the license plates from other states, but most of them were, well... boring. I thought Michigan's blue plates were the best because they stood out among other states plates. Fun fact: the white on blue plate was properly named "Lake Superior Blue".

The "white on blue" standard plate was available in Michigan from 1982 until 2007 when it was replaced with the virtual opposite "blue on white" standard plate seen below. In 2014, the Pure Michigan logo replaced block "MICHIGAN" at the top and the website was altered.Since there clearly aren't enough options for license plates in Michigan today (sarcasm), I have some in mind that I would like to be revived.

Michigan's first blue on white plate in 2007
Michigan's second blue on white plate in 2014

Going farther back, the license plates changed color more often. In fact before sticker tags were added in the early 1970s, a new plate was issued almost every year and the year was actually included on the plate itself until 1984.

In 1969, "The Great Lake State" slogan first appeared on license plates and ran through 1983 (other than 1976 to 1978 for the Bicentennial plates). It's odd to me that red and white was ever used in Michigan given our rivalry with that state just to the south.


Michigan 1969 red and white

In 1970, the plates honored the 10th anniversary of Oakland University using the gold and white representing the school's colors.

Michigan 1970 yellow and white plate

This plate won the Automobile License Plate Collectors Association's Best Plate of the Year Award for 1976 as many states around the country issued Bicentennial plates to celebrate the 200th birthday of the United States. It was issued from 1976 to 1978.

Michigan 1976 bicentennial license plate

In 1978, Michigan followed up the successful Bicentennial plates with a "white on black" plate that was issued through the end of 1983 before the introduction of the blue plates.

Michigan black and white plate

Of course, you can still use any of these plates if you qualify as a historical vehicle owner, including the blue plates. Here is the process according to the Michigan Secretary of State website.

Which, if any, of these plates would you like to see made available again?

[All photos courtesy David Nicholson - License plates of North America]

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