vintage and contemporary postcards and stamps from around the world

28 August 2016

Sunday Stamps II - 89

1968, Canada, Armistice, 1918-1968
Vimy Memorial

designed by Harvey Thomas Prosser
engraved by Yves Baril (picture) and Gordon Marsh (lettering)
based on the Walter S Allward sculpture

The Vimy Memorial was unveiled in July 1936, on 100 ha of land on Vimy Ridge that was granted to Canada by France to be used 'in perpetuity' as a memorial park with a memorial dedicated to Canadian war dead. The Battle of Vimy Ridge was the first time that all four division of the Canadian Expeditionary Force participated together and it became a national symbol of achievement and sacrifice. The two limestone pylons of the monument rise 125' and has many stylized figures. This stamp shows the 'Breaking of the Sword' - three young men, with one crouching and breaking his sword, meant to represent the "defeat of militarism and a general desire for peace".

"Vimy Ridge is one of Earth's altars on which Canadians sacrificed for the cause of humanity"
~ William Lyon Mackenzie King

for monuments

21 August 2016

Sunday Stamps II - 88

1956, Bulgaria, Olympics

In 1956, the Summer Games were held in Melbourne and were the first to be held in the southern hemisphere as well as the first to be held outside Europe or North America. Bulgaria issued a set of 6 stamps which included this one for gymnastics. The others in the set were for boxing, discus throw, pole vaulting, soccer, and basketball. That year, Bulgaria would win a bronze in football/soccer with 3 silver and a gold for wrestling. Women's gymnastics would be dominated by the Soviet Union and Hungary while the Soviet Union and Japan would dominate men's gymnastics.

for Olympics

14 August 2016

Sunday Stamps II - 87

2010, Japan

Another of Japan's wildly popular Hello Kitty series was issued in 2010 for that year's Expo in Shanghai China. She is depicted in a heart shaped stamp surrounded by chrysanthemums. Hello Kitty is an anthropomorphic white Japanese Bobtail cat who was first introduced by the Sanrio company in 1974. She is an essential part of kawaii - the quality of cuteness in Japanese culture. Originally marketed for young girls, by the 1990s her target was expanded to include teens and adults as a retro brand. Even though she was created by a Japanese market, and is a breed that's native to Japan and Southeast Asia, she was actually born in the suburbs of London and has a large family, including a twin sister. You can tell them apart by the bows in their hair - Kitty White (her 'real' name) wears a red (or pink) bow on her left ear, while Mimmy White wears a yellow bow on her right ear.

for odd shaped stamps

07 August 2016

Sunday Stamps II - 86

1934, USA, National Parks

Crater Lake, in Oregon, was formed around 7,000 years ago after the eruption of Mount Mazama. There are no rivers flowing into or out of the lake but the amount of rain and snowfall ensures that every 250 years the total amount of water is replaced. For this reason, Crater Lake has some of the world's purest water. It is famous for its clear, deep blue colour - which is represented in this stamp. This is one of a set of 10 stamps issued from July - September, 1934 to commemorate National Parks Year. 

for lakes and/or rivers