Organization: Canada Post
Products: Publication
Year: 1975

Product copy

1974 Souvenir Collection of the Postage Stamps of Canada

A Focus on the “1974 Postage Stamps of Canada”

In many respects, the year 1974 has been very fruitful and memorable for the Canada Post Office.

For the first time in its history, Canada authorized an issue of stamps with a surcharge. Honouring the 1976 Olympic Games, these semi-postal stamps gave the general public the opportunity of personally and voluntarily contributing to the preparation of athletes for the Games. The issue is composed of three stamps bearing the 1976 Olympic Games symbol. The graphic elements are the same as those incorporated in the issue of September 20, 1973, although a bronze background has been added to the original two stamps with gold and silver backgrounds. Repetition of the graphic design of one set of stamps in another of a smaller format is rare in Canadian philatelic history. The best known example of this is the “Large Queens” and the “Small Queens” of the nineteenth century.

The other Olympic Games stamp series: 1) Keeping Fit (Summer Scenes); 2) Keeping Fit (Winter Scenes), also represent a first in the philatelic world. These two issues were produced with the latent image technique, a special process which enables two visions to be incorporated in one design. Viewed straight on, each of the eight recreational activities is apparent, but when observed at an oblique angle, the Montreal Olympics symbol will appear. As a further means of generating financial support for the Games, the Canada Post Office cast exact replicas of the three Olympic Semi-Postal stamps in precious metal, respectively bronze, silver and gold. These metal stamps sculptures were offered for sale for a limited time only, and were a major success. This year, the young philatelist has commanded particular attention from the Canada Post Office. At the beginning of the school year, a brochure: “Stamps Canada”, and a newspaper: “The Three Penny Beaver”, were placed at the disposal of teachers and their pupils across the country. In the booklet, a jolly beaver “Phil Ately” invites them to join him in his favorite pastime, teaching Canadian history through stamps.

In response to continuing requests from collectors, the practice of engraving a miniscule date (year of issue) in the design –the “hidden date” was reinstated with the first stamp issue of 1974: The Pacific Coast Indians. Also incorporated in the design is the symbol®, indicating the Canada Post Office registration of copyright of the stamp de- sign. This practice will continue.

Another first for Canadian philately resulted from the production of the stamp commemorating Winnipeg’s centennial. On this occasion, embossing has been combined with four-colour offset lithography in the production of these stamps.

Truly a most memorable occasion in Canadian philatelic history occurred at the official inauguration of the National Postal Museum. Presided over by the Minister for the Canada Post Office, the Honourable Bryce Mackasey, numerous members of the philatelic world participated at the opening.

Postage stamps se-tenant enjoy an ever growing popularity with philatelists in Canada and around the world. Therefore, it was considered appropriate to present these stamps to you se-tenant, leaving it up to every collector to separate them, if so desired.

The Canada Post Office is pleased to offer you this special souvenir collection of all Canadian stamps issued in 1974. It has been specially constructed for the benefit of stamp collectors and for those with only a casual interest in collecting. It may be preserved intact as a unique souvenir or memento, or may be taken apart for storage in a more secure container or album. For the convenience of collectors, each inside page has been punched and perforated at the seam so the pages may be stored with other parts of their collection. You may find the stamp groupings of this particular album do not totally correspond with your preference and for this we apologize. In order to group primarily according to related themes, the chronological order of the stamp issues has been disturbed. Thus we have combined a) two stamp pairs of the Pacific Coast Indians on one page; b) three issues of the Olympic series on another page; and c) two issues regarding our own postal service and the Universal Postal Union on another page.

We wish you the greatest enjoyment of your 1974 collection.

Canada’s National Postal Museum.
Officially opened on September 27, 1974.

It is located in Ottawa at Confederation Heights, on the main level of the Sir Alexander Campbell Building (corner of Heron Road and Riverside Drive.)

Visiting Hours:

  • Tuesday through Saturday – 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Sundays 12 noon to 5 p.m.
  • Closed Mondays and Christmas Day

Group tours may be arranged in advance by writing to the Manager, National Postal Museum, Sir Alexander Campbell Building, Confederation Heights, Ottawa K1A OB1.

Admission is free.


The physical version of this product is part of the federal identity archive.