Four significant Canadian inventions – the electric oven, the electric wheelchair, the cardiac pacemaker and the iconic BlackBerry® – are honoured today with the release of four domestic-rate commemorative stamps in the Canadian Innovations series.
“This series shines a spotlight on the ‘Made in Canada’ leaps of science and creativity that have changed lives here in Canada and around the world,” said Jim Phillips, Director, Stamp Services at Canada Post.
Canadian cooks can thank inventor Thomas Ahearn for inventing the electric oven in 1892. The original model was made of brick, two metres wide by two metres high and, according to the press at the time, hot enough to “roast an ox.”
One of Canada’s most prolific inventors, George J. Klein, created an electric wheelchair that offered mobility to quadriplegics and changed their lives for the better.
In 1950, while studying hypothermia, Dr. John Hopps developed the world’s first cardiac pacemaker, which brought hope to those suffering with heart disease. The first version of the now common medical device was far too large to be placed inside the human body.
Research In Motion first introduced the iconic BlackBerry® in 1999. This now ubiquitous device freed information workers from their desks and changed the way the world communicates.
The challenge for Toronto design firm q30 was to find a way, given the broad timeline span of the innovations, to visually link the four stamps. Senior designer, Karen Henricks, in explaining the approach, notes, “We chose consistent cropping and angles, as well as a palette of co-ordinated colour tints and type, to tie the stamps together as a series.”
About the stamps
The self-adhesive Canadian Innovations stamps measure 24.75 mm x 32.25 mm (vertical) with simulated perforations and are printed by Lowe-Martin on Tullis Russell paper using lithography in eight colours. The official first day cover will be cancelled in Waterloo, Ontario. The stamps are available in booklets of 8 stamps.
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