OTD: Macdonald stamp marks first prime minister’s 200th birthday

On today’s date in 2015, Canada Post unveiled a Permanent stamp honouring Sir John A. Macdonald, one of the fathers of Canadian Confederation and the country’s first prime minister.

Designed by the Montréal-based studio Paprika and sold in booklets of 10 self-adhesive stamps, this issue marked the former prime minister’s 200th birthday. The unveiling was one of several events held in Kingston, Ont., the community most closely associated with Macdonald.

Arriving in Canada as a small child, Macdonald first practiced law before entering local – and then provincial – politics. He participated in both the Charlottetown and Quebec conferences, which led to Confederation, and was either prime minister or leader of the opposition from the formation of Canada until his death on June 6, 1891.

After he died in office in 1891, Macdonald laid in state in the capital of the still-fledgling nation as thousands paid their respects. Many more lined the tracks to watch the train that returned his body to his hometown of Kingston.

People across this great land also celebrated Macdonald’s success and character. His tireless work helped forge a loose collection of British North American colonies into a strong, self-reliant country.

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