July 20th, 2024

Collector’s Corner: Canal zone

By Dennis Vickery on June 29, 2024.


The Canal Zone is a strip of land 16 kilometres wide, extending through the Republic of Panama, between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. From 1904 until 1979 it was a U. S. Government Reservation which issued its own postage stamps. Several hundred different stamps were issued in the Canal Zone from 1904 until 1978.

The featured stamp depicts one of the large barge operated dredges which constantly maintain the waterway for the passage of ships.

My earliest experience with the canal were stories told to my brother and I as pre-teens by our old landlord in Lethbridge. He had traveled from his native England to work on the canal in 1905.

My wife and I had traversed the original locks a number of years ago and recently had the opportunity to experience the new, larger locks with a group of friends earlier this year. The transit fee for the cruise ship that we were on was US$156,000.

The sheer size of the new locks is breathtaking. They are able to accommodate almost any ship afloat. They are 55 meters wide and 427 meters long and require about 200,000,000 litres of water per transit.

I always say that you can relive many of life’s experiences through your stamp collection. Why not come out and share some of yours at the Medicine Hat Coin and Stamp Club. We meet at 7:00PM on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month at the Victory Lutheran Church. We are taking a holiday in July with meetings re-commencing August 13.

Dennis Vickery. Collector’s Corner is contributed by the Medicine Hat Coin and Stamp Club. For questions or comments about coin or stamp collection email@medhatcsc@live.com

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