OTD: Post Office Department issues Special Delivery stamp

On today’s date in 1932, Canada’s Post Office Department (now Canada Post) issued a 20-cent “Special Delivery” stamp (Scott #E5).

Special Delivery stamps, which were issued in Canada between 1898 and 1946, paid for expedited delivery of mail (now referred to as Xpresspost by Canada Post).

The Universal Postal Union first established expedited mail delivery for an extra fee in 1885.


On Christmas Eve, 1932, a total of 600,000 Special Delivery stamps (engraved, perforated 11 and printed by the British American Bank Note Company) were issued by the Post Office Department.

An imperforate variety exists (SC #E5a) with an imperforate pair listed by the Unitrade Specialized Catalogue of Canadian Stamps at $800 in Very Fine condition and an imperforate plate block catalogued at $3,000 in Very Fine. There are 75 imperforate pairs known to exist.

The Unitrade catalogue also explains: “In this revised design, the bottom tablet reads ‘CENTS’ only in place of ‘TWENTY CENTS.'”

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