Yes, you are correct on the decal, I got in a hurry and crossed two points. The useless decals were 38s,
and some of the 1940s had the blank firewall (no number embossing). I had one of these, a 1940 180 Limo.
I couldnt think of any reason why it was missing & all the other Packards had one. Also I couldnt see any signs of
major damage, repair, or tampering on the firewall. It was much later that I found that Packard omitted these
things at the factory for awhile.
One other related note on registrations ; I'm not sure about other states, but Missouri registered some of
the commercial Packard Henneys as just "Henney"--with nothing mentioning Packard on the title. They of course
used the motor block number, as the VIN.
The thief-proof numbers are valuable, since they may be the only "original" number identifying a given Packard
left on it. Even a well maintained/restored cars often have had a motor change or loss of the patent plate VIN at
some point in their history. You could say Packard is still trying to give the present day owner help in trying to
return incomplete, damaged or pieced together Packards back to the road. Good luck.............