Chinatown Gates recognized with new commemorative stamps

Colourful symbols of Chinese culture and heritage were a starting point for thousands of Chinese immigrants

OTTAWA, May 1, 2013 /CNW/ - For thousands of Chinese immigrants, the gates in Canada's Chinatowns were the sign they were welcomed in their new environment. Canada Post today issued eight new stamps to commemorate various gates across the country and what they represented for new Canadians.

Victoria's Gate of Harmonious Interest - at the heart of Canada's first Chinatown - is among the gates depicted in the set of Permanent™ domestic stamps. Other stamps show gates in Vancouver, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa, Mississauga, and Montréal.

"The historical and symbolic importance of these Chinese gates in Canada are beautifully represented in these stamps," says the Honourable Steven Fletcher, Minister of State (Transport).

Each gate contains unique elements that recognize events - such as the development of vibrant neighbourhoods that welcomed immigrants who decided to make Canada their home - or detail the architecture and construction seen in specific regions of China.

The gates, known as paifang in Mandarin, are typically made of stone or wood and were used in China to separate subdivisions within cities. They now serve as monuments and reminders of the culture and heritage that the Chinese community has brought to the Canadian mosaic.

The watercolour depictions displayed on the stamps were created by eight different illustrators to give each design a unique local perspective. Designer Hélène L'Heureux worked with the illustrations to ensure that the stamps came together visually as a unified set.

"These Canadian neighbourhoods provide so much diversity and energy to each city and the gates are a symbol of that," says Deepak Chopra, Canada Post's President and CEO. "The relevance and beauty of these eight Chinatown gates deserve this celebration."

About the stamps
All eight stamps measure 32 mm x 32 mm with simulated perforations. The Permanent™ domestic stamps are printed by Lowe-Martin on Tullis Russell paper using six-colour lithography. The stamps are pressure sensitive and the Official First Day Cover will feature a cancel from Victoria. Some 4.8 million stamps featuring the Chinatown gates have been produced and are sold in booklets of eight. Also available are a 150 mm x 150 mm souvenir sheet and an uncut press sheet of five souvenir sheets. To purchase philatelic products, visit

SOURCE: Canada Post

For further information:

Media Relations
613 734-8888

Brayden Akers, Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of State (Transport)
613 991-0700


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