Canadian Museum of Civilization gets royal stamp of approval

March 26, 2009

Canadian Museum of Civilization gets royal stamp of approval

Gatineau, Quebec, March 26, 2009 — The Canadian Museum of Civilization is preparing for a royal visit this summer — from Her Majesty’s Stamps, a new exhibition that will feature postage stamps and other philatelic gems from the personal Collection of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. This Canadian exclusive will be presented from June 19, 2009 to January 3, 2010.

 “We are very privileged to be allowed to share Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s philatelic treasures with Canadians,” said Victor Rabinovitch, President and CEO of the Canadian Museum of Civilization Corporation. “Postage stamps such as these are prized by collectors not only because of their aesthetic and financial value, but because they provide a fascinating pictorial history of modern times in the world.”

Her Majesty’s Stamps illustrates the introduction of the use of postage stamps in Great Britain in 1840, the first country in the world to do so. The Penny Black and Twopenny Blue stamps are today regarded as philatelic icons. The exhibition will also show how the Royal Philatelic Collection was developed into its present form by King George V.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II takes a personal interest in this collection which is housed at St. James’s Palace. It is widely regarded as the finest of its kind in the world, private or public. Queen Elizabeth encourages the presentation of selected pieces in major philatelic exhibitions, and is involved in the approval of every new stamp bearing her image.

“I am delighted to have worked with such a competent team at the Canadian Museum of Civilization in putting this superb exhibition together, which I hope will be appreciated by a wide range of Museum visitors,” says Michael Sefi, the Keeper of the Collection at St. James’s Palace.

The exhibition, which includes pieces unknown to collectors and many never before seen in Canada, will be divided into four zones: “A Royal Collection,” “The Birth of the Modern British Post,” “Canada Gains Its Postal Autonomy,” and “Canadian Treasures.”

Highlights will include an album of Canadian stamps commemorating Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee in 1897, and the first Canadian postage stamp, the Three Penny Beaver, designed by Sir Sanford Fleming in 1851,” says Bianca Gendreau, Curator at the Canadian Postal Museum. “Visitors to the exhibition will discover rare and beautiful stamps from the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth, stamp designs, proofs and colour trials, archival documents and caricatures, as well as early examples of Canadian stamps.”

The Canadian Museum of Civilization is extremely grateful to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for the loan of material from the Royal Philatelic Collection for this exhibition.

The Canadian Museum of Civilization is the centre for research and public information on the social and human history of the country. Located on the shores of the Ottawa River in Gatineau, Quebec, the Museum is Canada’s largest and most popular cultural institution, attracting over 1.3 million visitors each year. Th