FDC Specialist - Vol. 1 No. 9 - April 1985

Articles appearing in this newsletter are protected by Copyright. Anyone wanting to reprint articles must obtain written permission from: Marcel Cool. Short excerpts of articles may be reproduced for the purpose of reviewing this newsletter by philatelic columnists or editors of Philatelic pubIications.


On May 20th 1982, a series of Canadian stamps were issued to commemorate Canada 82 and to honour the work of young collectors. It is hoped that the work of our youth is done in a more precise way than was done by Canada Post for this issue. In fact, the stamps depicted earlier Canadian stamps and the stamp bulletin issued by the philatelic service of Canada Post states in part "The 35-cent denomination will feature the Mount Hurd stamp of 5 December 1928" and "The 60-cent stamp shows the Bluenose stamp of 8 January 1929".

The Canada Post Official cacheted First Day Covers for this issue have a brief description of the stamps printed on the back which reads in part: "the 10¢ Mount Hurd stamp was issued on 5 October 1928" and " The 5¢ Bluenose stamp was issued on 6 January 1929".

A series of postcards featuring the original Canadian stamps was also issued by Canada Post on this occasion which also gave a brief description of these stamps. The dates of issue on these coincide with those given on the First Day covers above. One has to wonder how they obtained the correct dates (See article in Vol 1 #8) for the stamp bulletin? To obtain the other set of dates, all that one has to do is refer to the Scott Specialized, the Canada Specialized or the Lyman catalogues.

I have already published evidence for the official issue dates of these stamps; would any of the above firms be prepared to offer evidence for the dates which they quote?


As the British American Bank Note Company secured the contract for printing Canadian stamps in 1929, it became necessary for them to design a new series of definitive stamps. The design chosen for the required new release of stamps was the Maple Leaf in each of the upper corners on all values and the arch used for all the low value stamps from 1¢ to 10¢ thereby giving the name for this issue of "Arch and Maple Leaf".

Ten stamps were originally planned for this issue but, changes in Postal Rates and Universal Postal Union regulations necessitated new values and colors for the definitive stamps.

For this issue, as was the case for the Scroll issue of 1928, no cacheted covers are known to exist, and we are once again indebted to Mr. T.R. Legault for the preparation of First Day Covers addressed to himself and to Mr. A.F. Brophy of Montreal.

This issue is also known by Plate Block collectors as being the first issue to have the Plate Number and other imprint information in the four corners of the printer's sheet. Canada was the first country to adopt this system of imprimature.

Mr. Legault also prepared covers bearing Plate Blocks for all the low value stamps up to and including the 10¢ stamp. These covers are unique. The exact number of covers bearing single stamps prepared by Mr. Legault is not known but at least two sets were addressed to Mr. A.F. Brophy.

It appears that very few cities other than Ottawa, the official city, received their supplies of these stamps for the day of issue. Covers from only two other cities are known: Grand Pre, Nova Scotia and Senneville, Que.

A note is known signed by the Postmistress at Grand Pre, N.S. dated Dec. 8th, 1930 advising that only three covers bearing the 500 Grand Pre stamp had been postmarked by that office on the day of issue, Dec. 4th, 1933.

Several FDCs with plate blocks of four of the 2¢ green, Scott # 164 (`Plate Nos 3, 4 and 5) and 5¢ violet, Scott # 159 (Plate No 1) were made at Senneville, Que. by Ian C. Morgan, the publisher of "The Specialized Catalogue of Canadian Airmails".

The first stamp to be issued in this series was the 2¢ green, Scott # 164, issued Jun 6, 1930. As with all the low values from 1¢ to 8¢, it shows a picture of H.M. King George Vth in uniform by Carl Ault. The 5¢ violet stamp was issued on June 16, 1930.

As for the illustrations used for the Scroll issue, the covers shown in this article are from the collections of Tom Collop and Maurice Malenfant. I thank them again for their cooperation in contributing precious material for the documentation and research on Canadian First Day covers.

On July 17, 1930 the 1¢ orange stamp was issued, Scott # 162, and on August 13, 1930 the 8¢ blue, Scott # 171 was issued.

On September 2, 1930 a new 20¢ special delivery stamp was issued. Legault covers also exist for this stamp.


The 10¢ value depicts the Library of Parliament in Ottawa and was issued Sept. 15, 1933, Scott # 173.

The 4¢ yellow bistre, Scott # 168 illustrated below, was issued Nov. 5, 1930. Also issued on that date was Scott # 172, 8¢ orange.

On July 1st, 1931 the rate for domestic letters was raised from 2¢ to 3¢ while a year before the rate for foreign letters had been reduced to 5¢ from 8¢. According To Universal Postal Union regulations, it was necessary to change the color of all affected values so that the 1¢ was changed from orange to green, the 2¢ from green to red, the 5¢ from violet to blue and the 6¢ from blue to orange. Also in 1830, the 2¢ had to be changed a second time from red to brown so that the new 3¢ value could be issued in red.

On Nov. 13, 1930 the blue colored 5¢ stamp was issued, followed on Nov 17th by the 2¢ red Scott # 165. The high value, double size definitives as well as a new Air Mail stamp Scott # C2 were all issued on the same day: Dec. 4, 1930.

The 12¢ stamp depicts the Citadel in Quebec city, which is a four-pointed fortress atop Cape Diamond, some 350 feet above and overlooking the St. Lawrence River to the east. The present structure was erected by the British in 1823-32 to defend against possible attack from the United States.

The 20¢ stamp, Scott # 175 depicts a harvesting scene in the prairies. The 20¢ stamp of the Scroll issue had also depicted a harvesting scene showing horse-drawn equipment. This more modern version shows a mechanized form of harvesting tractor.

The 5¢ stamp, Scott # 176 shows a composite view of Grand Pre, Nova Scotia, home of the heroine of Longfellow's poem Evangeline. Depicted is the chapel in Grand Pre Memorial Park built to preserve the memory of the Church of St. Charles in which the expulsion of the Acadians was ordered. Also depicted is the bronze statue of Evangeline by Philippe Hebert, a direct descendant of the first Acadian families. Hebert died before the work was completed. It was finished by his son Henri and unveiled in 1920.

The Dollar stamp, Scott # 177 depicts Mount Cavell, named after the heroic nurse of the first World War who was executed by the Germans in Belgium in 1915. The mountain is situated in Jasper National Park, Alberta.

The charge in printers also necessitated the issue of a new Airmail stamp along with the new regular issue. As with the definitive stamps, this 5¢ brown stamp, Scott #C2 also has the Maple Leaf in the upper corners and depicts a globe and a figure of the winged Mercury, the messenger of the Gods, is shown with a scroll in his hand against the western hemisphere.

First Day Covers for this issue are only known with Ottawa cancellations. Besides the Legault cover shown below, Mr. Hugh Bignell of Tantallon, N.S. has supplied us with a very unusual air mail cover for this issue. Can anyone identify the designer of this air mail border?

The last stamp in this series to be issued in 1930 was the 1¢ green, Scott # 163 issued Dec 6, 1930. The following is a summary of all the Canadian stamps issued in 1930 in chronological sequence.

June 6, 1930 2¢ green Scott # 164
June 18, 1930 5¢ violet Scott # 169
July 17, 1930 1¢ orange Scott # 162
August 13, 1930 8¢ blue Scott # 171
September 2, 1930 20¢ henna brown Scott #E4
September 15, 1930 10¢ green Scott. # 173
November 5, 1930 4¢ bistre Scott # 168
November 5, 1930 8¢ orange Scott # 172
November 13, 1930 5¢ blue Scott # 170
November 17, 1930 2¢ red Scott # 165
December 4, 1930 12¢ grey Scott # 174
December 4, 1930 20¢ red Scott # 175
December 4, 1930 50¢ blue Scott # 176
December 4, 1930 $1 green Scott # 177
December 4, 1930 5¢ brown Scott # C2
December 6, 1930 1¢ green Scott # 163

In order to make this Study as complete as possible, I would greatly appreciate receiving copies of any additional first day covers for this issue as well as any other information pertinent to this issue.


A change in the international postal rates, effective July 1, 1931, made the issuance of a red 3¢ stamp necessary. Since all the 3¢ stamps of the 1928 scroll issue had been used up and that dies had not been prepared for a 3¢ stamp for the Maple Leaf & Arch issue, it became necessary for the post office to provisionally use a three cent stamp of the Admiral issue of 1924. These were coil stamps, perforated 8 vertically, which had been hand-made jointed strips for use in vending machines. These stamps were perforated 12 horizontally and issued in Ottawa on June 2L, 1931 to be used until a 3¢ stamp of the regular series could be issued. T.R. Legault again prepared first day covers for this issue. No cacheted covers are known to exist. This stamp is listed as Scott # 184.

On July 4, 1931 the third and final 2¢ value printed in brown, Scott # 166 was issued. Previously printed in red, Scott # 165, the color had to be changed to allow the printing in red of the required 3¢ stamp.

The provisional issue was only used for a short time. On July 13, 1931 the red 3¢ Maple Leaf & Arch type was issued.

The last stamp to be issued in 1931 was a 10¢ stamp, Scott # 190, depicting a portrait of Sir Georges Etienne Cartier, replacing the 10¢ Library stamp, Scott # 173. The stamp was issued on September 30th, 1931.

It had originally been planned to include a stamp honoring Sir Georges Etienne Cartier, MacDonald's partner in the Confederation of Canada as part of the historical issue of 1927, Scott Nos 146-148. The stamp was delayed and finally released as part of the Maple Leaf Arch issue. Legault covers were again prepared for this issue and no cachets are known to exist.

The dark ages of Canadian First Day cover collecting finally came to an end with the 1932 issues. The rarity of First Day covers prior to 1932 is the main reason for catalogues to begin listing First Day cover prices in 1932 only. It is hoped that with the cooperation of collectors of Postal History material and cover specialists more and more covers will be discovered used on the first day of issue of Canadian Stamps. At this point in time, it, may even be worthwhile to form a study group to attempt to establish the earliest covers available for any given stamp, including coil stamps.


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