World Stamps

Dove design imparts peace on Canada’s Armistice issue

Oct 24, 2018, 6 AM

By Molly Goad

Canada Post remembers the 100th anniversary of the truce that ended World War I with a new stamp issued Oct. 24.

“This stamp celebrates the silencing of the guns and commemorates those who fought and died for peace,” Canada Post’s Details magazine said.

At 11 a.m. on Nov. 11, 1918 — “the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month” — a ceasefire was initiated between the Allies and Germany. Of the more than 650,000 Canadians who served with the Allies, 66,000 were killed and 172,000 wounded, according to Canada Post.

Larry Burke and Anna Stredulinsky of Burke & Burke designed Canada Post’s Armistice stamp, and Jillian Ditner was the illustrator.

The bird hovering over barbed wire against a desolate backdrop “serves as a poignant metaphor for the return of peace to a war-torn world,” according to Details magazine.

Burke said of the stamp design, “To us, the armistice was less about the moment of its signing than the lasting peace it brought.

He said photos of the celebrations in 1918 were selected for the booklet, pane of five and official first-day cover to impart the relief and happiness expressed by Canadians at the war’s end.

For example, the selvage of the pane of five shows a large photograph of celebrations at Bay and King streets in Toronto, according to an inscription at the bottom of the pane.

The die-cut self-adhesive stamp is a permanent stamp paying the domestic letter rate (currently 85¢). Measuring 36 millimeters by 25mm, it is available in 10-stamp booklets (Canada Post order no. 414097111) and the pane of five stamps (404097107).

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Lowe-Martin printed 250,000 booklets and 40,000 panes in four-color offset lithography. Symbolic doves in the four colors (cyan, magenta, yellow and black) are shown in the selvage of the pane of five and the booklet pane.

Canada Post also reported that the barbed wire shown in the design “is highlighted with a spot varnish special effect.”

Canada Post’s first-day cover for the stamp has an Ottawa cancel with a poppy at its center. (The poppy design is a registered trademark of the Royal Canadian Legion, Dominion Command, and is used under license.) While the stock of 8,000 lasts, the FDC is available for $1.85 (414097131).

On its website, the Royal Canadian Legion said of Remembrance Day: “Every year, at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, we gather in memorial parks, community halls, workplaces, schools and homes to stand in honour of all who have fallen. Together, we observe a moment of silence to mark the sacrifice of the many who have fallen in the service of their country, and to acknowledge the courage of those who still serve.”

Other recent Canadian stamps with WWI subjects include the 2015 commemorative issue for the 100th anniversary of the poem In Flanders Fields by John McCrae (Scott 2835-2836), the 2016 Black Heritage stamp honoring the contributions of the No. 2 Construction Battalion (2895), and a 2017 joint-issue with France for the centennial of the Battle of Vimy Ridge (Canada 2981-2983, France 5216).

Canada Post products are available online. Stamps and FDCs are available by mail order from Canada Post Customer Service, Box 90022, 2701 Riverside Drive, Ottawa, ON K1V 1J8 Canada; or by telephone from the United States or Canada at 800-565-4362, and from other countries at 902-863-6550.

Canada’s stamps and stamp products also are available from many new-issue stamp dealers, and from Canada Post’s agent in the United States: Interpost, Box 420, Hewlett, NY 11557.