"For the 150th year since Confederation, Canada Post expanded its storytelling role by issuing 10 stamps – in the shape of a maple leaf for the first time in their history."
The Canada 150 issue celebrates 10 of our country’s most transformative moments. These special stamps recreate the events that united us, moved us forward and made us proud to be Canadian. Casting our eyes back on the past 50 years since our centennial in 1967, Canada Post selected 10 truly iconic milestones and accomplishments from a wealth of social progress, innovation and other significant achievements that have positioned us as a vibrant and successful nation on the world stage.
There is no question that we Canadians have so much to celebrate for Canada 150. We are a model of tolerance and diversity to the world - a fact reflected in some of the 10 chosen topics. We showed ourselves to be a nation poised for progress during our 100th anniversary, and over the past five decades, we have proved ourselves as builders, creators and inventors, constantly meeting the challenge to be the very best. We have succeeded and achieved greatness in science, sports, leadership and much more. That excellence, that achievement, is an integral part of this stamp issue.
We want to share this Canada 150 celebration with you - not just through these 10 magnificent maple leaf-shaped stamps - but through the stories behind them, the unveilings where we came together with Canadians across this land - and together we rose, lumps in our collective throats, so proud of what we’ve accomplished and empowered to take on the challenges of the future.
"Hockey’s legendary Cold War battle pitted Canada’s top stars against the Soviet Union’s Olympic and world champions."
It was a Cold War battle on ice, an emotional rollercoaster ride for the country – and like no other hockey series before or since. The 1972 Canada-USSR Summit Series captivated Canadians. For years, Canada’s best players, being professionals, had been barred from competing against the world’s best amateurs, the Soviets, who were Olympic and world champions. Canadian fans were convinced such a contest would easily establish Canada’s supremacy in the sport. The eight-game Summit Series shattered that assumption. Canada’s best pros, wearing one jersey and called Team Canada for the first time, were expected to handily win every game – but the supposed cakewalk became a clash of titans.
On September 2, 1972, the puck dropped on Game 1 at the Montreal Forum. Team Canada scored two early goals, but the Soviets kept coming at them in brilliantly executed attacks. The Canadians were in trouble by the second period, and lost 7-3. Canadians were stunned. In Game 2 in Toronto, Team Canada fought to a 4-1 victory. Game 3 in Winnipeg was a 4-4 tie. With a chippy, undisciplined effort in Game 4 in Vancouver, Team Canada lost 5-3. The booing from the home-rink crowd triggered a televised post-game rebuke from exasperated and exhausted centre Phil Esposito. His inspirational speech became a turning point in the country’s support and in the series.
The tournament moved to Moscow for the final four games. Boosted by some 3,000 Canadian fans who made the trek to Moscow, Team Canada rallied to win the last three games of the series. Each of those victories was capped by a game-winning goal from winger Paul Henderson, including the series winner in Game 8, depicted on the stamp.