Fed. Rep. of Germany
German Dem. Rep.
Collectors Meeting
Occupation Zones (West) 1948 - 1956

1948 - 1956 Western Occupation Zones (second and equalized system for all zones)

In the year 1948 another new system has been established for all zone including the Soviet occupation zone (you'll find examples from the Soviet occupation zone on the pages on East Germany's plate history). This system was in use until 1956 in the western zones. Only in West-Berlin a different system was in use. In the following I show plates from all four areas.

The carried a state code at the left as shown in the following list. After this and in front of the dash the was a code number for each county followed by a serial number.

British Zone

American Zone

French Zone

BH = Hamburg

AB, B = Bayern

FBy, By = Lindau

BN, N = Niedersachsen

AE = Bremen

FB = Süd-Baden

BR, R = Nordrhein-Westfalen

AH, H = Hessen

FR = Rheinland-Pfalz

BS = Schleswig-Holstein

AW, W = Baden-Württemberg

FW = Württemberg-Hohenzollern

British Occupation Zone:


BH = British Zone Hamburg, plate on the right is probable a rear motorcycle plate


BN = British Zone Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony), 46 = County / Landkreis Harburg in Winsen/Luhe

Tis plate is from the year 1948. Only in the first year of issue a little 48 was used to show the issuing year. Probable the shown plate is a rear motorcycle plate, but the same format was also used for rear plates on farm tractors.

Now after years of searching finally a plate from my home county Verden. It was also issued in 1948.

BN=British Zone Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony), 70=County / Landkreis Verden/Aller


BN = British Zone Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony), 30 = County / Landkreis Grafschaft Schaumburg in Rinteln

This plate is made from aluminum. Letters and numbers are embossed and the plate carries a thick plastic seal which is fully intact.


BN = British Zone Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony), 45 = County / Landkreis Gifhorn


N = Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony), 90 = County / Landkreis Friesland in Jever

Shortly before this series was taken out of use in some counties they run out of serial numbers and introduced a new code letter without the B for British. This was also done in the American Zone.


BR = British Zone Rheinland (Nordrhein-Westfalen), 63 = County / Landkreis Detmold

Again a plate from the year 1948. Probably a rear motorcycle plate.


BR = British Zone Rheinland (Nordrhein-Westfalen), 40 = County / Stadtkreis Hamm / Westfalia


BR = British Zone Rheinland (Nordrhein-Westfalen), 742 = County / Landkreis Moers

This plate carries an intact flat plastic seal with the text "Landkreis Moers, Kreisverwaltung, Straßenverkehrsamt".


Also in the Rhineland BR has changed to R in the last years of these issues.
53 = County / Landkreis Büren


BS = British Zone Schleswig-Holstein, 61 = City / Stadtkreis Lübeck


BS = British Zone Schleswig-Holstein, 61 = City / Stadtkreis Lübeck
embossed on aluminium base plate

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