BNAPS ORE - Reference Articles

Guide to the Admiral Stamps of Canada

Randall W. Van Someren

Introduction | Formats | Printings | Dies | Paper | Straight Edges | Coils |
Fakes | Forgeries | Terminology | Varieties | Cancellations | Rates | Bibliography


This annotated bibliography is divided into four sections:

  1. Books about Admiral stamps
  2. Books with sections pertaining to Admiral stamps
  3. Periodicals with significant Admiral content
  4. Websites that deal with Admiral stamps

1. Books about Admiral Stamps

Front cover of the book 'The Admiral Issue of Canada' by George C. Marler Photo of George C. Marler

George C. Marler
[Source: BNA Topics, Vol. 38, No. 4,
July-Aug. 1981, p. 14]

  1. Marler, George C. The Admiral Issue of Canada.
    State College PA: American Philatelic Society, 1982. 567 pp.

    This is the book on the Admirals. Lots of information and very detailed. Will answer most questions you have about the Admirals if you can find the right place in the book. Unfortunately, the index and the photos are sometimes not the greatest. It is most likely to be used by the specialist since it gets into the Admirals deeper than most collectors wish to get into them.

  2. Marler, George C. Canada - The Admiral Issue 1911-1925.
    Toronto: Unitrade Press, 1980. 75 pp.

    A reprint of the 1949 book entitled Canada: Notes on the 1911-1925 Issue (APS). The 1949 edition was the first book to be published on the Admirals. It is still a good source of basic information on the stamps. However, it should be remembered that much of the information is dated and has been corrected and/or expanded in the author's 1982 book (see above).

  3. Marler, George C. Booklets of the Admiral Stamps of 1911 to 1925.
    British North America Philatelic Society, 1970. 58 pp.

    A detailed treatment of the Admiral booklet stamps. Although the author incorporated much of the material in his 1982 book, this handbook still has useful information not covered elsewhere.

  4. Morris, Richard M. Color Guides for the Admiral Issue of Canada.
    Norfolk MA: Pittsboro Philatelics, 2000. (unpaged).

    Uses actual color chips attached to the pages to illustrate the colors found on the Admirals. A very useful book for someone interested in the different colors and shades found on these stamps.

  5. Morris, Richard M. A Guidebook to the Admiral Issue of Canada: Understanding Marler and Others.
    Norfolk MA: Pittsboro Philatelics, 2001. (unpaged).

    Published on behalf of the Admiral Study Group, this booklet provides notes to guide Admiral collectors who are beginning to specialize. It has a brief overview of line engraving, explains various terms found in Marler, describes how to distinguish between die types and wet and dry printings, illustrates several plate flaws, etc.

  6. Morris, Richard M. The Admiral Issue of Canada.
    British North America Philatelic Society, Ltd., 2008. 167 pp. (Volume 48 of BNAPS Exhibit Series)

    This is based on a ten-frame exhibit covering the entire Admiral issue. For each stamp, it shows all the types described by Marler in his 1982 book. It illustrates re-entries, relief breaks, new early dates of use, and discoveries that Marler did not report.

  7. Reiche, Hans. Admiral Cancels.
    Toronto: Unitrade Press, 1983 (2nd edition). (unpaged).

    A small booklet that discusses and illustrates many of the cancellations found on the Admirals. A good introduction to the subject.

  8. Reiche, Hans. Admiral Color Identification.
    Zurich: Fretz Brothers, (date: ?). 19 pp.

    This booklet uses fairly accurate color photographs to illustrate the various colors found on the Admirals. However, the first ten pages of the booklet are more valuable than the photographs. They are a discussion of the colors and shades found on each denomination of the Admirals except the War Tax stamps, which are missing from both sections of the book. An excellent companion to the Richard Morris Color Guide book (see above).

  9. Reiche, Hans. The Admiral Issue (part of the series Canadian Stamp Handbooks edited by Michael Milos).
    Toronto: The Unitrade Press, 1984. Unpaged & loose-leaf.

    A specialized listing of the Admiral stamps. The listing of complete stamp booklets is easy to use. This work does not cover the War Tax stamps. Removing the pages with the stamp values makes the page layout less confusing. Most of the information presented here is available elsewhere so this is not a "must" for a philatelic library on the Admirals.

  10. Reiche, Hans. Canada: The Admiral Flaws.
    (Printer: ?); 1987. 22 pp.

    A small booklet illustrating 269 plate varieties found on the Admirals. The introduction claims these varieties are not listed in Marler.

  11. Reiche, Hans. Canada: The Admiral Stamps of 1911 to 1925.
    (printer: ?); 1965. 136 pp.

    An attempt to get a handle on all the Admiral information by one of the great Admiral specialists. Easier to use but not as detailed as Marler. Some of the information and conclusions are dated, but this is still a very useful book.

  12. Reiche, Hans. Canada: The Admiral Stamps of 1911 to 1925, Part 2.
    (printer: ?); 1971(?). 49 pp.

    A companion volume to the preceding book. It presents information and corrections after the first book was published.

  13. Reiche, Hans. The Canadian Admiral Stamps: A Complete Annotated Reference Guide.
    (printer: ?); 1990. 76 pp.

    A very valuable book providing nearly 400 annotated bibliographic references to articles and books on the Admirals, current through the late 1980s. Once you have the bibliographic citation, the article can be obtained from your favourite philatelic library if it isn't available online at the websites listed under "Periodicals".

  14. Reiche, Hans. The Canadian Lathework Design.
    Toronto: Unitrade Associates, 1978(?). 11 pp.

    A small booklet illustrating the various lathework designs that exist on the Admirals. There is also a discussion of the various theories as to why the lathework was put on the plates in the first place.

  15. Steinhart, Allan L. The Admiral Era: A Rate Study 1912-1928.
    Toronto: Jim Hennok Ltd., 1981. 166 pp.

    This is the book on the postal rates of the Admiral era. All the rates and rate changes are discussed. Some are illustrated with appropriate covers. Of use to the collector who has an interest in collecting the Admirals on cover and needs to understand the various rates of this period.

  16. War Tax Study Group, Hans Reiche, chairman. Canada - The War Tax Stamps.
    Jamaica NY: Fritz Billig, 1959. 36 pp. (Volume 9 of Billig's Specialized Catalogues.)

    A detailed examination of each of the War Tax stamps of Canada (including the overprints). There is much good information here even though some of it may be dated.

  17. Willson, Vic. Admirals Away: Canadian Letter Rates 1912-1928.
    British North America Philatelic Society, Ltd., 2011. 186 pp. (Volume 61 of BNAPS Exhibit Series)

    This book is based on an eight-frame exhibit showing examples of rates for letter mail posted during the Admiral period. The book is divided into four sections: 1) domestic mail; 2) preferred rates to the U.S. and other countries; 3) British Empire mail; and 4) UPU mail. Each section shows rates for forward letters, shortpaid mail, and registration. Domestic mail also covers drop letters, airmail, semi-official mail, and special delivery. Great companion to Allan Steinhart's book on Admiral postal rates.

2. Books with sections relevant to Admiral stamps

  1. Unitrade Specialized Catalogue of Canadian Stamps.
    Toronto: The Unitrade Press.

  2. Baxter, James H. Printing Postage Stamps by Line Engraving.
    American Philatelic Society, 1939. Reprinted in 1981 by Quarterman Publications, Inc. 164 pp.

    This book does not explicitly discuss the Admiral issue; however, it has probably the most detailed description of the engraving and printing of line engraved stamps, the process used to produce Admiral stamps.

  3. Boggs, Winthrop S. The Postage Stamps and Postal History of Canada.
    Lawrence MA: Quarterman Publications, Inc., 1974. 870 pp.

  4. Gray, Ross. Catalogue of Canadian Railway Cancellations and Related Railway Postmarks including Selected Waterway Postmarks.
    British North American Philatelic Society, 2009. 316 pp.

    For the stamp collector interested in RPO cancels of the Admirals era (or any other era, for that matter), this book is an absolute necessity. The catalogue is a major rewrite of Lewis M. Ludlow's 1982 catalogue, and incorporates the 22 annexes and other information uncovered since that 1982 catalogue was published.

  5. Holmes, L. Seale. Holmes' Specialized Philatelic Catalogue of Canada and British North America.
    Toronto: Ryerson Press, 1968 (11th edition). 434 pp.

    The 1943 edition includes a 246 page "handbook" section that was cut from subsequent editions. Chapter 39, some 30 pages long, was devoted to the Admiral issue, and much of it was written by Frank W. Campbell, who was noted for his studies of this issue prior to acquiring his renown as a postal historian. Although most of the information appears in later books, there are still items that make this chapter worth reading.

  6. Jarrett, Fred. Stamps of British North America.
    Lawrence MA: Quarterman Publications, Inc., 1975. 595 pp.

  7. Johnson, J.C.; Tomasson, G., ed. Canadian Stamps with Perforated Initials, 5th edition.
    British North America Philatelic Society. Available online on the BNAPS website.

    All the perfins known to exist on Canadian stamps are illustrated in this book. Indispensable for the collector interested in perfins on the Admirals. The 4th edition was published by Unitrade Press, 1985.

  8. Kraemer, J.E.; Marasco, D.; Field, B. The Standard Canada Precancel Catalogue.
    Toronto: The Unitrade Press, 2004 (5th edition). 56 pp.

    A catalogue listing the various types of precancels that exist on Canadian stamps - including the Admirals.

  9. Lowe, Robson. Encyclopedia of British Empire Stamps, Vol. V: North America.
    London: Robson Lowe, Ltd., 1973. 760 pp.

  10. Maresch, William H.P.; Leggett, Arthur, ed. Canada Specialized Postage Stamp Catalogue 1980.
    Toronto: Unitrade Press, 1980. 143 pp.

  11. McCann, Bill. Standard Catalogue of Canadian Booklet Stamps.
    Toronto: The Unitrade Press, 1996 (3rd edition). 204 pp.

    Booklets, booklet panes, and single stamps from booklets are listed for all Canadian stamps that come in the booklet format - including the Admirals.

  12. The Precancel Committee, H.G. Walburn editor. The Canada Precancel Handbook.
    Toronto: The Unitrade Press, 1988. 183 pp.

    A detailed study of Canadian precancelled stamps. While information pertaining to the Admirals is found in many chapters, Chapter 22, "The Admiral Period", is of special interest to the stamp collector studying precancels found on the Admiral stamps.

  13. Reiche, Hans. Canada - Steel Engraved Constant Plate Varieties.
    Toronto: Unitrade Press, 1982. 114 pp.

  14. Wrigley, Roy. The Catalogue & Guidebook of Canadian Official Stamps.
    Vancouver: J. & M. Publishing Co., Ltd., (1982 or 1983) (10th edition). 65 pp.

    The discussion of the 5-hole OHMS perfin is relevant to the Admiral collector because this perfin is found on the Admirals.

3. Periodicals

  1. The Admiral's Log.
    Admiral Study Group of the British North America Philatelic Society, ISSN 1916-6664.

    Newsletter published by the Admiral Study Group on an irregular basis since January 1996. Contains tutorials, inventories of known copies of scarce varieties, and new research. Has described several major discoveries made since Marler's 1982 book was published.

  2. BNA Topics.
    British North America Philatelic Society, ISSN 0045-3129

    Published quarterly. Back issues (except for the most recent five years) and a searchable index available online. A search for "Admiral" produced about 150 hits.

  3. The Canadian Philatelist.
    Royal Philatelic Society of Canada, ISSN 0045-5253.

    Published bimonthly. Back issues (except for the most recent five years) and a searchable index available online. A search for "Admiral" produced about 50 hits.

  4. Maple Leaves.
    Canadian Philatelic Society of Great Britain, ISSN 0951-5283.

    Published quarterly. Back issues (except for the most recent five years) available online. Searchable index available on the BNAPS website. A search for "Admiral" produced about 175 hits.

4. Websites

  1. Brown, Tony; Burn, Mike. The Admiral Stamps of Canada.
    Pages dated 1997 - 2005. Royal Philatelic Society of Canada. Viewed in February 2013.

    This article provides much information for the Admirals as a whole, and also for each denomination. All denominations and formats are illustrated.

  2. DLG Philatelics. Exhibits of Classic BNA Philately and Postal History.

    This website has a comprehensive, well illustrated presentation of the Admiral issue. It has information on general topics such as essays and proofs, lathework, wet and dry printings, shades, rates, etc. It also has a separate page for each denomination with illustrations of proof material, plate imprints, lathework, pyramid lines, etc.

  3. Trimble, Ralph E.
    Pages dated 2002 - present. Viewed in February 2013.

    As the website's home page says, this is "A site devoted to the study of re-entries on postage and revenue stamps". Most of the re-entries shown are on stamps of Canada and British North America, including many on Admiral stamps. Even if you are not interested in re-entries or the Admirals, this website is worth visiting for its fantastic close-up stamp images.

Introduction | Formats | Printings | Dies | Paper | Straight Edges | Coils |
Fakes | Forgeries | Terminology | Varieties | Cancellations | Rates | Bibliography

Copyright © 2007-2013 Randall W. Van Someren.
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