Georgia State Patrol

The Georgia State Patrol was formed on March 19 1937. It was the motoring public who first advocated the need for the Department of Public Safety. Traffic fatalities, increased crime, and a need for a larger law enforcement agency with statewide arrest powers, led Georgia lawmakers to create the State Patrol.

In the summer of 1937, the first Trooper School was held at Georgia Tech and graduated 80 Troopers. The Department of Public Safety comprised of three divisions: The first being uniformed-State Patrol, the second a division of criminal identification, detection, prevention, and investigation and the third division was for driver licensing. The first vehicles of the GSP were thirty three 1937 Fords with an 85 horsepower engine and bulletproof windshields.

They were gun metal gray with orange lettering. The 1950's saw a steady expansion of all levels of state policing including communications and investigative work. Illicit drug investigations were stepped-up in the 1970's and 80's. The men and women of the GSP have proven their diligence in state law enforcement at all levels including such high profile events as the Democratic National Convention of 1988, the late Winter "Storm of the Century" in March of 1993 as well as when Georgia hosted the world at the 1996 Olympic Summer Games in Atlanta.

Today, the GSP employs over 850 Troopers, 246 dispatchers, 334 license examiners and 530 civilian employees. The GSP has 48 patrol posts throughout the Peach State.

Georgia State Flag

The Georgia flag has three red and white stripes and the state
coat of arms on a blue field in the upper left corner.
Thirteen stars surrounding the seal denotes Georgia's position
as one of the original thirteen colonies. On the seal three pillars
supporting an arch represent the three branches of
government; legislative, judicial and executive. A man
with sword drawn is defending the Constitution,
whose principles are wisdom, justice and moderation.
The date 1776 represents the signing of the Declaration of Independence.
Flag adopted May 8th, 2003

1940 State base with "P" (for Patrol) prefix
Picture courtesy of Norman Rhoades
 

Embossed steel (Approx. 6.25" x 14") with EARLIEST EXAMPLE IN THE USA of the use of experimental glass bead reflectorization on the license numbers. Color decal of plump Georgia peach separating the number 11 and 4.
11= Hinesville Post - Car 4 RARE.

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This plate once belonged to Colonel R.H Burson, head of the Georgia State Patrol, and was affixed to the back of his black 1970 Oldsmobile 88. Plate features embossed image
of state capitol.

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1970 issue- Dalton Post (5) Car 4.
Assigned to Trooper "Bud " White.

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1971-1975 issue- Atlanta Post- Car 28
Courtesy of Captain Carlton Stallings (GSP Retired)
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1976-1983 issue- Lafayette Post (41) Car 1.
Assigned to Post Commander, Sergeant Charles S. Dunn.

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1976-1983 issue- Georgia Federal & State. Used by joint task forces including GSP, GBI, FBI, ATF
and US Marshall's Service.

1984-1989 issue


Photo Courtesy of Monty McCord


1990-1997 issue- "Pure" 1990 issue without
validation or masking decals.
Plate courtesy of Captain Carlton Stallings (GSP Retired)

Picture courtesy of Jay Weinstein

1990-1997 issue- with '91
validation decal.
Plate courtesy of the Robert Ward Collection
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1990-1997 issue- Masking decals in top corners to obliterate the 19 and the 90 to make this plate appear more permanent)
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1998-2005 issue


1998-2005 issue with masking decal over the 98 in the bottom right corner. These were added after complaints were received by the department from motorists that the GSP were driving around with "expired tags".
Plate courtesy of the Robert Ward Collection

Picture courtesy of
Captain Carlton Stallings (GSP Retired)

1998-2005 issue- Later version with no year or decal
in lower sticker navels.
Plate courtesy of the Robert Ward Collection
 

Current Issue
Picture courtesy of Sgt. Dan Blevins, Georgia State Patrol

Picture courtesy of Sgt. Dan Blevins,
Georgia State Patrol

1998-2005 issue reserved number for unmarked patrol vehicles. The last 2 numbers are the trooper's badge number.
Courtesy of Captain Carlton Stallings (GSP Retired)

Courtesy of Captain Carlton Stallings (GSP Retired)

Despite the fact that this 1990-1997 plate appears to be like any other Georgia passenger plate of the day, it is a confirmed GSP Uniformed Division "unmarked car" plate. Badge 084 (a lieutenant out of GSP Headquarters) would have been assigned this plate to run on his/her unmarked car. Numbering followed the following issuance blocs: Colonel 1, Lt. Colonel 2, Major 3-9, Captain 10-34, Lieutenant 35-85, and all others from 86 and up.
Courtesy Captain Carlton Stallings (GSP Retired)

1987 ACE recipients plate. Achieved by 25 felony arrests within one year involving stolen vehicles. Each gold lightning bolt signifies 5 of those arrests. These award plates are highly coveted as a hard- earned trophy for the recipient's intrepid work above and beyond the regular call of duty.

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1989 ACE recipients plate. Achieved by 25 felony arrests within one year involving stolen vehicles. Each gold lightning bolt signifies 5 of those arrests. These award plates are highly coveted as a hard- earned trophy for the recipient's intrepid work above and beyond the regular call of duty.
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Front "booster" plate used on vehicles assigned to GSP Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team

Courtesy of Captain Carlton Stallings (GSP Retired)

1980's/90's-Optional "Booster" front plate
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Current Georgia State Trooper's Association
"Booster" front plate.

Picture courtesy of
Captain Carlton Stallings (GSP Retired)

The 1956-2001 Georgia State Flag used as a front plate for many a GSP patrol vehicle. Many Georgia residents found the inclusion of the Confederate Battle Flag offensive and representative of a distasteful segment of Georgia history. For years the design of the flag was challenged and in January, 2001, the Georgia House and Senate voted on a new design intended to recognize the Confederate Battle Flag's historical significance while minimizing its prominence as representative of the state of Georgia. Governor Roy Barnes signed the legislation that had made its way through the Georgia Legislature in only six days and a new flag was quietly raised over the state capital on January 31. The use of these plates on the front of GSP vehicles was no longer permitted.



Picture courtesy of Jay Weinstein