A trio of publications about Canadian airmail is now available for free online through the American Air Mail Society (AAMS).
The books include:
- the first edition of The Air Mails of Canada and Newfoundland, published by the Canadian Aerophilatelic Society in 1997;
- the fourth edition of Canada Air Mail Rates from 1925 to 2020, which was updated by David Crotty earlier this year; and
- Newfoundland Post Office Circular Airmail Sections 1937-1949 by Jack Ince, published in 2013.
The Air Mails of Canada and Newfoundland is part of the sixth edition of The American Air Mail Catalogue and is the standard reference for Canadian aerophilately, according to co-ordinating editor Chris Hargreaves. It is currently being revised, and in order to keep the printed edition of the revised catalogue (AMCN2) to the same size as the current edition (AMCN1), some of the unchanged information in AMCN1 will be omitted from AMCN2.
It was decided to place AMCN1 online so the information left out of AMCN2 would still be readily available to purchasers of AMCN2. Although AMCN2 will not be ready for several months, AMCN1 has been placed online “as a service to all collectors and researchers,” said Hargreaves.
AMCN1 includes a section on Canada airmail rates produced by Trelle Morrow and Ritch Toop in 1995. Since then, Canadian airmail rates have been detailed in several books, including:
- Air Mails of Canada, 1925 – 1939 by George Arfken and Walter Plomish;
- Official Air Mail Rates to Foreign and Overseas Destinations as Established by the Canadian Post Office 1925-December 1942 by David Whiteley; and
- Canada Domestic and International Postal Rates and Fees 1870-1999 by Robert Smith and Anthony Wawrukiewicz.
“These are all excellent books, but there are sometimes contradictions between them,” said Hargreaves.
Crotty offered to update the rates section of AMCN1 and set out to produce the definitive guide to Canada’s airmail rates. His research ended up as a book, Canada Air Mails Rates from 1925 to 2020, which includes the new rates introduced this Jan. 13. This update has also been posted on the AAMS website, to supplement the information in AMCN1.
“Although some people assume that the airmail rates from Newfoundland before Confederation were the same as those from Canada, this was definitely not the case. In particular, the Newfoundland Post Office listed specific rates to overseas countries, long after the Canadian Post Office introduced rates to different geographic regions,” said Hargreaves.
The main source of information about Newfoundland airmail rates is a booklet produced by Ince with extracts photocopied from the Newfoundland Post Office Circular. This booklet is also available on the AAMS website together with Crotty’s rate guide.
To access the books, click here.