Canadian Postage Stamps to Commemorate Historic Covered Bridges

2019-06-01 Sat

On 17th June, Canada Post is going to issue a booklet, a souvenir sheet and postal cards with four non-denominated permanent stamps depicting four historic covered bridges. Every stamp in the set shows a photo of the bridge, its name, the year of completion, its length, the locations it connects and the type of trusses used.

The 391-meter-long Hartland Bridge over Saint John River was built in 1901 and was covered in 1922. It connects Hartland with Somerville and New Brunswick. Seven Howe trusses hold the bridge together. The truss design was patented by William Howe of Spencer, Mass. in 1840.

There were 1,400 covered bridges in Canada in the 19th century, but only 140 of them exist today. The red-coloured Powerscourt Bridge or Percy Bridge in Quebec over Chateauguay River was built in 1861 and is the oldest existing covered bridge in Canada. It is the only bridge which uses the McCallum inflexible arched-truss design.

The West Montrose Bridge across Grand River became functional in 1881 and is Ontario’s only existing historic covered bridge. It’s also known as Kissing Bridge as it offered intimacy and privacy to travellers.

The Felix-Gabriel-Marchand Bridge over the Coulonge River was built in 1898 and is Quebec’s longest covered bridge, covering a distance of almost 500 feet. The bridge was built using a combination of Queen Post and Town lattice trusses.

Ashnola No. 1 Bridge is the only existing historic covered bridge in British Columbia. It carried the Great Northern Railway over the Similkameen River near Keremeos after it became functional in 1907. In 1926, its Howe trusses were sheathed in wood panelling and the overhead cross-bracing was removed. The railway tracks were removed in 1954, and the bridge was used to transport vehicles in 1961.

The stamps were designed by a design firm named Paprika. The photographs were taken by Craig Lovell (Hartland), Harold Stiver (Powers­court), Eric Foucart (Felix-Gabriel-Marchand), and Joe (Jose) Garcia (Ashnola No. 1). Moment, Getty Images (West Montrose Bridge). The stamps were printed by lithography in booklets of 10 and a souvenir sheet of five with se-tenant designs by Canadian Bank Note. 200,000 booklets and 80,000 souvenir sheets were printed in total. The postal card features an imprinted stamp on one side and a photograph of the bridge on the other.

Image Courtesy: Canada Post