Canada Post released today an enchanting set of stamps to celebrate the wonder and playfulness of vintage carousels in Canada.
The vibrant stamps spotlight five historic carousels located across the country. The featured carousels are each known for their elaborately carved and beautifully painted animals. They also showcase the craftsmanship and mechanical ingenuity that were impressive for their era.
Dating back to the 12th century, carousels were originally used as a military training game. By the mid-19th century, they had evolved into the beloved fairground ride that remains a nostalgic staple of amusement parks to this day.
The stamp set features these five carousels:
Lakeside Park Carousel (Lakeside Park, St. Catharines, Ontario)
Built by Kremer’s Carousel Works circa 1903, this impressively large carousel boasts 68 animals and four chariots in four rows – and today still costs only a nickel to ride.
Bowness Carousel (Heritage Park Historical Village, Calgary, Alberta)
Built by Herschell-Spillman Co. in 1904, this is a very rare three-row track machine, where the horses’ rocking motion comes from eccentric drive wheels under the platform.
C.W. Parker Carousel No. 119 (Burnaby Village Museum, Burnaby, British Columbia)
Built in 1912 and now fully restored, this carousel features 36 jumping horses, four stationary horses, a chariot and music provided by a 1925 Wurlitzer band organ.
Roseneath Carousel (Roseneath Fairgrounds, Roseneath, Ontario)
Built by C.W. Parker in 1906, this was originally a portable carnival carousel. It is the only Canadian carousel to receive the National Carousel Association (U.S.) Historic Carousel Award – in 2010.
Le Galopant (La Ronde, Montréal, Quebec)
Built circa 1885 in Belgium, this was originally a travelling carousel powered by steam. It made its first Canadian appearance at Expo 67.
About the stamps
The stamps are designed by Paprika and feature illustrations by René Milot. Printed by Colour Innovations, each stamp depicts one animal from each of the featured carousels, with the location indicated at the bottom. The stamp issue is cancelled in Calgary, home of the Bowness Carousel at Heritage Park Historical Village. The cancellation is inspired by midway ride tickets. The stamp issue includes a booklet of 10 Permanent™ domestic rate stamps (the booklet is designed in the style of traditional circus, midway advertising posters), a souvenir sheet of five stamps, an Official First Day Cover and a set of five postcards.
Stamps and collectibles are available at canadapost.ca and postal outlets across Canada.