St. Lawrence River
Date of Issue
August 10, 1993
Canada's River Heritage, Routes of Settlement and Growth
Series Time Span
Perforation or Dimension
13 x 12.5
Designed by Malcolm Waddell Based on illustrations by Jan Waddell
When Europeans first set foot in Canada, they were faced with a wilderness barrier of trackless forests. Fortunately, this new land was also crisscrossed by many grand rivers, and these became the early routes of discovery, settlement and growth. The third set of Canada's River Heritage stamps, released August 10 in commemorative booklet form, features five of Canada's important heritage rivers: the St. John; the St. Lawrence; the Red; the Fraser; and the Yukon. On August 10, 1535, on the Feast of St. Lawrence, Jacques Cartier gave the name St. Lawrence to a bay of the great river that he had just begun to explore - a river of central importance to Canada's very existence and growth. The St. Lawrence, which is 1197 kilometres long, is the 14th largest river in the world, and second only to the Mackenzie River in this country. The river proper stretches from Lake Ontario at a point near Kingston to the Gulf of St. Lawrence near Sept-Iles. And with its major tributaries, the Ottawa, the Saguenay, the Manicouagan, the St-Maurice and the Richelieu, it is a drainage basin of over one million square kilometres! Tapping into a maze of lakes and rivers, the St. Lawrence begins an east-west passage above the U.S. border. It has been a gateway to the nation, a home to much of our population, and a vital artery of exploration, commerce and settlement. The stamp portrays an outward bound container ship in mid river, with the Laurentians in the background. A vignette shows the Beluga whale, once common in the river and now endangered.
Canada Post Corporation. Canada's Stamps Details, No. 11, 1993, p. 8-10.
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