On today’s date in 1933, Canada’s Post Office Department (now Canada Post) issued two stamps as part of its third “Postage Due” series.
In accordance with its policy of making Canadian postage stamps bilingual, the department issued a new series of Postage Due stamps with inscriptions in both French and English in 1933-34.
The two Postage Due stamps issued on Dec. 20, 1933, had a denomination of two cents (Scott #J12) and 10 cents (SC #J14).
A four-cent stamp (SC #J13) was also issued earlier in the month on Dec. 11.
Across the top of the design are the words “POSTAGE DUE”; below this is the numeral value in a rectangular tablet while the word “CENT” is below the numeral value. Beneath this are the two French words, “A PERCEVOIR” and “CANADA.”
Canada’s first Postage Due stamps – a set of three – were first issued to postmasters across the country on June 1, 1906.
The stamps were used to collect the remaining payment of mail sent with insufficient postage. A Postage Due stamp would be added to underpaid mail to indicate how much postage was still due for payment.
The new system of collecting the postage-due money, however, only began a month after the first Postage Due stamps were issued, according to Douglas and Mary Patrick’s 1964 book, Canada’s Postage Stamps.
Postage Due stamps were issued in Canada until 1978.
The world’s first Postage Due stamps were issued by France in 1859.