Canada 150’s First Maple-Shaped Stamp Shows Expo 67 Habitat

An exhibit from Expo 67 — a world’s fair held in 1967 in Montreal, Quebec with a theme of Man and His World — will appear on a new stamp that is part of Canada Post’s 10-stamp sesquicentennial set to be issued June 1.

This is the first stamp unveiled in the set that will be in the shape of maple leafs, Canada’s national symbol, and issued in various formats on June 1. Among those on hand today for the unveiling was Habitat’s architect, Moshie Safdie.

The stamp was unveiled today in a ceremony at the honeycomb-like Habitat 67, simply known today as Habitat, which was originally created as an exhibit for Expo 67. Sixty nations participated and more than 50 million visitors attended Expo 67 from April through October 1967.

Safdie, a graduate of McGill University, wished a happy birthday to Expo 67, Canada, and Montreal during his remarks at the unveiling ceremony.

He noted how the Expo was an “extraordinary cultural event and economic success” in a moment of “optimism and idealism” in Canada. He noted how Habitat was a “radical and controversial” idea, but thanked three branches of government that helped make it a success.

Habitat was conceived as a model community and housing complex by Israeli-Canadian architect Safdie. With its 354 identical open-air interlocking units and terraces some reaching as high as 12 stories, Habitat is an architectural landmark in Montreal. Originally created as 354 identical apartments, the structure today has 146 residences.

Several notable Canadians are helping to unveil the stamp subjects, all celebrating the most significant moments in the life of the country since it marked its centennial in 1967.

Distinguished Canadians, including a country music star, a world-renowned architect, successful business leaders, influential community activists, legendary athletes, and an astronaut will help unveil the stamp designs over the next five weeks at separate locations chosen to illustrate the story behind the achievement, event or milestone that the stamp commemorates.

The remainder will be revealed separately over five weeks, culminating with the unveiling of two stamps on June 1. On that day, all 10 Permanent domestic-rate stamps will be available in various formats — at post offices and online, via mail order or phone. Customers can also order in advance at canadapost.ca/canada150 or by phone.

With each stamp unveiling, videos with these notable Canadians, other key participants and archival footage will tell the story of that stamp subject on the website.

A total of 10 stamps will be issued at nine unveilings between April 27 and June 1 as part of Canada Post’s Canada 150 program.

The American Philatelic Society will also post updates on this blog. Subscribe to the blog to receive notifications when new posts go up.

Changeable Ink Can Make Moon
Appear on U.S. Eclipse Stamp

The U.S. Postal Service will issue on June 20 a forever stamp noting this year’s total solar eclipse using a special kind of ink that will make an image of the moon appear beneath your thumb.

The stamp, printed in panes of 16, will be released in anticipation of the August 21 total eclipse of the sun that will track diagonally across the United States from Oregon to South Carolina, the Postal Service said today in a news release. It’s the first such eclipse appearing over the United States mainland since 1979.

Thermochromic ink is being used on a U.S. stamp for the first time, the Postal Service said in a news release. As sold, an image of the eclipse appears in the center of the stamp. Using the body heat of your thumb or fingers and rubbing the eclipse image will reveal an underlying image of the moon. The image reverts back to the eclipse once it cools.

Thermochromic inks are vulnerable to UV light and should be kept out of direct sunlight as much as possible to preserve this special effect. To help ensure longevity, the Postal Service will be offering a special envelope to hold and protect the stamp pane for a nominal fee.

The stamp images are photographs taken by astrophysicist Fred Espenak, who is known as Mr. Eclipse, of Portal, Arizona. The photo of total eclipsed moon on the stamp was taken March 29, 2006 in Jalu, Libya.

Tens of millions of people in the United States hope to view the rare event. The eclipse will travel a narrow path across the entire country for the first time since 1918. The path will run west to east from Oregon to South Carolina and will include portions of 14 states.

The first-day-of-issue ceremony will be at 1:30 p.m. (Mountain Time) June 20 at the Art Museum of the University of Wyoming in Laramie. The university is celebrating the summer solstice on that day. Prior to the event, visitors are encouraged to arrive at 11:30 a.m. to witness a unique architectural feature where a single beam of sunlight shines on a silver dollar embedded in the floor, which occurs at noon on the summer solstice in the UW Art Museum’s Rotunda Gallery.

Continue reading “Changeable Ink Can Make Moon
Appear on U.S. Eclipse Stamp”

Westpex Stamp Show in California April 28–30

The 57th annual Westpex stamp show, April 28–30 will salute the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love, host a first-day of issue ceremony for a new U.S. stamp, present nearly 300 frames of top-class competitive exhibits, host meetings for several societies and specialty groups, offer a youth area, and feature more than 70 dealers.

An opening ceremony is set for 9:30 a.m. Friday, and the show runs through Sunday at the San Francisco Airport Marriott Waterfront.

A first-day ceremony is set for 1 p.m. April 28 to celebrate the U.S. Postal Service’s new Succulent Global Forever international rate stamp.

The show salutes the Summer of Love, which combined many social movements, particularly those supported by younger society, such as anti-war, alternative and rock arts, long-hair fashion, and experimentation.

Guest societies on hand will be the Scandinavian Collectors Club, International Philippine Philatelic Society, and Polonus Polish Philatelic Society. Others on hand having meetings, lectures, or booths will include the Netherlands Philatelists of California, Great Britain Collectors Club, Western Cover Society, Ryukyu Philatelic Specialist Society, China Stamp Society, Universal Ship Cancellation Society, British North America Philatelic Society, Smithsonian National Postal Museum, and the Western Philatelic Library.

More than 50 exhibits include a world of diversity, from “The First 60 Years of the Mongolian Postal Service” and “Polish Refugees in Africa, World War II” to “Hollboll’s Danish Christmas Seals: 1904–1927” and “The Telegraph in America.”

The show formally opens at 10 a.m. each day and closes at 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 4 p.m. Sunday. A $5 admission is good for all three days; age 15 and younger are free when accompanying an adult.

American Philatelic Society Executive Director Scott English, as well as several other APS board members, will be at the show. On April 29, Scott will host an APS Town Hall at 11 a.m.

The official show website includes all details, including a full schedule, at  www.westpex.com.