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Dominion of Canada Stamps

Issues of 1911-1926

All of the Canada stamps issued between 1911 and 1926, with only one exception, are part of what Canadian philatelists refer to as the "Admiral Series" of definitive postage stamps.  This series is one of the favorite collecting specialties of Canadian philatelists, and the existing varieties are immense. 

It's not really as bad as it looks at first.  Actually, only eleven different definitive stamp denominations were issued during this period!  But, it's as if they couldn't make up their minds which colors or formats they wanted to use for each of the stamps.  And that's where the rather complex philatelic fun begins!

There are an incredible number of shade, plate, and printing varieties of all these stamps.  The Scott Classic Specialized Catalog lists very few of them. 
For anyone wishing to specialize in these stamps, the Unitrade Specialized Catalogue of Canadian Stamps is an absolute necessity. 


The first definitive Canada stamps, featuring the left-facing portrait of King George V, were issued in sheet format between 1911 and 1925.  These stamps were all engraved, unwatermarked, and perforated 12.

Only eleven definitive stamp denominations were issued, but there were many changes over the life of this series.  One could almost make a specialty out of just collecting the color and shade varieties of these stamps.

  • 1 C.  (1911 - Scott #104) - Green, Blue Green, Deep Blue Green.
  • 1 C.  (1922 - Scott #105) - Yellow, Orange Yellow, Lemon Yellow.
  • 2 C.  (1911 - Scott #106) - Carmine, Pink.
  • 2 C.  (1922 - Scott #107) - Yellow Green, Green.
  • 3 C.  (1918 - Scott #108) - Brown, Yellow Brown.
  • 3 C.  (1923 - Scott #109) - Carmine, Rose Carmine.
  • 4 C.  (1922 - Scott #110) - Olive Bister, Olive Yellow, Golden Yellow, Yellow Ocher.
  • 5 C.  (1912 - Scott #111) - Dark Blue, Indigo, Gray Blue.
  • 5 C.  (1922 - Scott #112) - Violet.
  • 7 C.  (1912 - Scott #113) - Yellow Ocher, Olive Bister, Straw, Sage Green.
  • 7 C.  (1924 - Scott #114) - Red Brown.
  • 8 C.  (1925 - Scott #115) - Blue.
  • 10 C.  (1912 - Scott #116) - Plum, Reddish Purple.
  • 10 C.  (1922 - Scott #117) - Blue.
  • 10 C.  (1925 - Scott #118) - Bister Brown, Yellow Brown.
  • 20 C.  (1912 - Scott #119) - Olive Green, Sage Green, Dark Olive Green, Gray Green.
  • 50 C.  (1925 - Scott #120) - Black Brown, Black.
  • $ 1  (1923 - Scott #122) - Orange, Deep Orange.

All of the 1 C. denomination through the 3 C. denomination definitive Canada stamps of King George V were also issued in booklets.  The booklet stamps of King George V were issued in much greater quantities than in previous reigns, thus all of the booklet panes of this era are relatively affordable.


The first coil format Canada stamps, for use in vending machines, were issued between 1912 and 1924.

These are the vertical coils, perforated 8 horizontally:

  • 1 C.  (1913 - Scott #123) - Dark Green.
  • 2 C.  (1913 - Scott #124) - Carmine.

These are the horizontal coils, perforated 8 vertically:

  • 1 C.  (1912 - Scott #125) - Green.
  • 1 C.  (1923 - Scott #126) - Orange Yellow, Yellow.
  • 2 C.  (1912 - Scott #127) - Carmine.
  • 2 C.  (1922 - Scott #128) - Green.
  • 3 C.  (1918 - Scott #129) - Brown.
  • 3 C.  (1924 - Scott #130) - Carmine.


Sheets intended for the manufacture of perforated 8 coil stamps were sold in vertical pairs and blocks, so that the adjacent stamps are imperforate between.  Some of these varieties are actually quite inexpensive.

The four coil format stamps shown above, utilizing a different perforation gauge, were issued between 1915 and 1924.

These vertical coil stamps are perforated 12 horizontally:

  • 1 C.  (1915 - Scott #131) - Green.
  • 2 C.  (1915 - Scott #132) - Carmine.
  • 2 C.  (1924 - Scott #133) - Yellow Green.
  • 3 C.  (1921 - Scott #134) - Brown.





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Return to Dominion of Canada Stamps
From Issues of 1911-1926





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The 3 C. denomination commemorative stamp (Scott #135) shown above was issued on September 15, 1917 to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Canadian Confederation.

The design features the famous 1883 painting, "Fathers of the Confederation", by Robert Harris (1849-1919).  The original painting hung in the central block of the Parliament Building in Ottawa, and it was completely destroyed by a fire there in 1916.  Only photographs of the original work remain.

The painting is actually somewhat of an enigma.  The figures in the painting are a composite of the delegates that attended the Charlottetown and Quebec Conferences of 1864.


During 1924, the post office placed imperforate sheets of the current 1 C., 2 C., and 3 C. denomination definitive postage stamps on sale to the public (Scott #136-138).

They are all shown above.


During 1926, the two provisional stamps (Scott #139-140) shown above were issued.

The 3 C. denomination carmine definitive stamps were revalued to "2 Cents", with the overprint coming in two different formats.

Significant errors exist on both of these revalued stamps.