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The Atlas of Canada - 1906-2006

Stamp Info

Name Value
Date of Issue June 30, 2006
Year 2006
Quantity 2,500,000
Perforation or Dimension 13 x 12.5
Printer Lowe-Martin Company Inc..
Postal Administration Canada

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Stamp Values/Prices (Beta Mode*)

Condition Name Avg Price
M-NH-VF Mint - Never Hinged - Very Fine
Mint - Never Hinged - Very Fine $1.25
U-VF Used - Very Fine
Used - Very Fine $0.35
* Notes about these prices:
  • They are currently in beta mode, meaning that they should not be relied upon yet as a source of truth and could change frequently. Please notify PSG if you come across values that do not make sense.
  • They are not based on catalogue values but on current dealer and auction listings. The reason for this is that catalogues tend to over-value stamps.
  • They are average prices and might not be fully accurate. The actual value of your stamp may be slightly above or below the listed value, depending on the overall condition of your stamp.


Pane of 16 stamps

Quantity Produced - 156,250
Original Price: $8.16
Perforation: 13+
Dimension: 45.5 mm x 32 mm (horizontal)
Printing Process: Lithography in 9 colours
Gum Type: P.V.A.
Tagging: General, 4 sides
Paper: Tullis Russell Coatings

Official First Day Cover

Quantity Produced - Unknown
Cancellation Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Original Price: $1.51
Perforation: 13+
Dimension: 45.5 mm x 32 mm (horizontal)
Printing Process: Lithography in 9 colours
Gum Type: P.V.A.
Tagging: General, 4 sides
Paper: Tullis Russell Coatings

About Stamp

In today's world of satellites, global positioning devices and maps that provide miniscule detail about virtually every square inch of our world, it's hard to comprehend a time when an atlas of the world - let alone an atlas of Canada - didn't exist. And yet, that time wasn't so very long ago. On June 30, 2006, Canada Post will issue a single domestic rate (51¢) stamp to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the first Atlas of Canada.

When James White, Canada's Chief Geographer, created the first edition of the Atlas of Canada one hundred years ago, it was a landmark in our country's history. The Atlas was a compendium of relief maps, and information about the country's geology, canals, lighthouses, railways, -rainfall, snowfall, population densities, mineral deposits, forest resources, telegraph and telephone lines, mountain heights and ocean depths, and more. In its day, the Atlas was innovative and well reflected this country's pioneering spirit because, at that time, no country except Finland had ever issued such a publication. White had 6,000 copies of the first -edition of the Atlas printed.

"Canada Post felt it was appropriate to celebrate this unique piece of our history with a commemorative stamp," says Liz Wong, Manager of Stamp Design and Production at Canada Post. "Before creating the Atlas, James White first published a standard base map of Canada and then a 50-sheet set of topographical maps of well-settled areas. He followed this with the Atlas - an invaluable publication that reflects not only the physical geography of our country, but also its incredible social, environmental and -economic diversity."

Designed by Karen Smith of Trivium Design Inc. in Halifax, the stamp depicts a likeness of James White, a modern map of Canada and a set of proportional dividers. Ivan Murphy provided the stamp's illustration with photography from Robert Young.

"We felt that James White was an appropriate choice given his contribution to the creation of the Atlas," explains Smith. "We decided to use a sepia image of White, to give a sense of how he would have been depicted a hundred years ago, and placed him beside a modern map of Canada."

This combination of the old and the new is a -feature that runs throughout the design, with original map-making instruments featured on the stamp itself and a satellite on the pane. The desire to unite old and new was also behind the decision to mingle photographic elements and illustration into the design.

"When James White published his Atlas, it was printed in eight colours, which was a first for 1906," says Wong. "We wanted to acknowledge White's innovative approach by printing this commemorative stamp in a similar number of colours."

For more information about James White, please visit The Canadian Encyclopedia

To find out more about the Atlas of Canada, check out the Natural Resources Canada website at


Designed by Karen Smith.

Similar Stamps


Canada Post Corporation. Canada's Stamp Details, Vol. 15, No. 2, 2006, p. 28-29.

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