License Plate Game

I've removed the names and other key elements from all 50 U.S. state license plates. How many can you identify? Of course, you could look them up, but where's the fun in that? There are enough clues to help you get them all without using Google, etc., but you'll have to use your brain. Even the plain plates have clues. A little bit of knowledge about each state will help you.

 

jon.o.nicholas@gmail.com
 

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Bonus challenge: The plates are not listed randomly. By what method did I place them?