There were two basic formats for the cover designs. The first is shown below, and consists of the Canadian coat of arms surrounded by inscriptions, against a dotted pattern. The second is the same, except without the inscriptions.
- Those that have a front cover with the arms & inscriptions where the text is 57 mm wide.
- Those that have a front cover with the arms & inscriptions where the text is 63 mm wide.
- Those that have a front cover with the arms and "Canada Postage" or "Postes Canada" only.
Then the booklets themselves contained several pages bearing messages, including what is called a "rate page". Booklets containing more than one page also contained wax coated tissue interleaf pages, whose function was to prevent the panes from sticking to one another. The scans below show examples of these types of pages:
- 1c green booklet containing 24 1c green stamps in 4 panes of 6.
- 2c brown booklet containing 12 2c brown stamps in 2 panes of 6.
- 3c carmine booklet containing 8 3c carmine stamps in 2 panes of 4.
- Combination booklet containing 4 of each 1c, 2c & 3c, in pane pane of 4 each.
- One containing a rate page, and
- One with no rate page.
- One type of booklet contained no rate page.
- One type of booklet contained a rate page showing the 6c airmail rate.
- A third type of booklet contained a rate page that was defaced by a large red "X"
These are much scarcer than the other booklets, and this scarcity is reflected in the Unitrade catalogue price.
Four booklets were issued in this format, one of each basic type, for a total of 8 different basic booklets, once the English and French covers are considered.
Thus without taking the dotted cover dies into consideration, and without considering paper, gum and shade differences on the stamps themselves, there are 52 different booklets to collect.
Dotted Cover Die Variations
The above scan is an excerpt from Peter Harris's book titled: "Canadian Stamp Booklets: Dotted Cover Dies 1935-1955". I do not wish to plagarise his work, so I will only provide a synopsis of it here.
The degree of complexity associated with the booklets of this issue is mitigated by the fact that:
- There is only a single die type of the plain front cover, and
- There is only a single die type of the back covers.
- English covers with 57 mm text: 2 different for each type of booklet, i.e. 2 of the 1c green, 2 of the 2c brown, 2 of the 3c carmine and finally 2 of the combination booklets.
- French covers with 57 mm text: 2 different for each booklet type as above.
- English covers with 63 mm text: 1 die for each type of booklet.
- French covers with 63 mm text: 1 die for each type of booklet.
- 5 essays of the King Edward VIII design, four of which are in black, and one of which is rose red as shown above.
- 20 Large die proofs in the issued colours.
- 15 stamp sized die proofs in issued colours, with file numbers noted.
- 2 photographic essays of the 3c and 6c in black.
- 7 progressive proofs in various colours of the 3c, 20c and $1.
- 1 progressive proof of the frame of the 6c airmail in green.
- 8 trial colour proofs of the 3c, 6c airmail, 20c, 50c and $1.
- 2 essays in black for the 1c postal stationery design.
- 17 die proofs in black for the 1c, 2c and 3c postal stationery designs.
- Plate blocks - 2 of each corner - valued at $6,250 per set of 5 blocks.
- Cross-gutter blocks of 16 - 4 sets valued at $15,000 per set.
- Gutter blocks of 8 - 8 sets valued at $8,000 per set.
- Blocks of 4 at $3,200 per set.
- Pairs at $1,600 per set, not including the 20c special delivery or $2,300 including it.
- Singles at $800 per set, not including the 20c special delivery.
- "19" and "38" appear in each of the lower corners, though these dates can be difficult to see sometimes.
- There is a large coloured dot inside the A of "postage".
- The veins of the leaves are full, extending all the way to the borders of the leaf.
- Stamped envelopes
- Private order envelopes
- Post bands
- Albino impressions.
- Stamp impression on the inside of the envelope instead of the outside.
- Stamp impression in the wrong place on the envelope.
- Double or multiple stamp impressions.
- Complete extra stamp impressions.
- Offset impressions either on the front, or the inside of the envelope.
- Double envelope
- 1c green
- 1c green + 1c green reply card.
- 2c light brown
- 2c black brown
- No inscription
- Inscribed "Canada Post Card" at top centre.
- Bilingual inscription "Canada/Business Reply Card" in 2 lines at top left.
- 1c green, which can also be found preancelled and with the stamp on both sides of the card.
- 2c light brown, which can also be found with half the stamp impression only.
- 2c black brown, which also exists on mimeograph stock and rouletted on mimeograph stock.
- 1c green, typographed. This can also be found on mimeograph stock.
- 1c green offset printing, which can be found with the heading either 83 mm long, or 81.5 mm long. This type also exists rouletted on mimeograph stock.
- 2c light brown.
- 1c green, typographed. This exists rouletted on mimeograph stock.
- 2c light brown.
- Message portion inscribed "Canada Post Card" as a above, and the reply portion inscribed "Canada Post Card (Reply)" in 2 lines.
- Message portion inscribed "Canada/Business Reply Card" in 2 lines at top left, as above, and the reply portion inscribed "Canada/Reply Post Card - Carte Postale Reponse".
- Go for all the different errors you can find.
- Look for differences in the pre-printed text other than those detailed above.
- Collect shade varieties for the stamp impressions.
- Collect different cancels or town usages for each type.
- Collect up-rated items that were used for non-domestic use by adding additional stamps.
- A wide variety of advertising covers, corner card covers and hotel covers can be collected for the printed matter and local domestic rates. Alterntively, you could focus on obtaining covers from small town post offices, that are either closed now, or those that opened or closed during the life of the issue.
- The higher values can be sought on high-value local, special delivery or registered frankings, or on bulk mailing receipts.
- You could focus on exotic foreign destination covers, including airmail covers.
- A number of new airmail routes were inaugurated during the life of this issue, and many first flight airmail covers were carried on each of them, and are quite collectible.
- This issue covers the first three years of the Second World War, and consequently, there are a large number of censored covers that can be collected.
- Upright reading from left to right.
- Upright, reading from right to left.
- Inverted reading from left to right.
- Inverted reading from right to left.
- Sideways pointing left and reading up.
- Sideways pointing left and reading down.
- Sideways pointing right and reading up.
- Sideways pointing right and reading down.
All of the basic stamps from this set, and the 3c coil are known with the 5-hole type, though I do not know whether or not all of them can be found with all eight orientations. Also, the "missing pin in "S" variety should exist for all the 5-hole types as well, possibly in all 8 orientations. All of the basic stamps except for the 20c special delivery, and the 2c and 3c coil stamps are known with 4-hole type. The $1 aniline ink printing is only known with the 4-hole type. The 10c dark green special delivery is known with two different types of 4-hole perfins:
- Type 1: narrow "O" and an extended seventh pin from the top of the "S".
- Type 2: wide "O". The extended pin is found on 3 of the 10 dies used for this type.
This concludes my discussion of this amazing issue. My next post will look at the first two commemorative issues from George VI's reign: the 1937 Coronation Issue, and the 1939 Royal Visit Issue.