Cross-Border Canada & USA 1761-1875
A History of Cross-Border Postal Communication between Canada and the United States of America 1761-1875, 2010 by Sanderson, Dorothy & Montgomery, Malcolm. A full study of Canada-USA cross-border mail, based on the covers collected by the late Dorothy Sanderson and supplemented by key covers from other major collections, with rates, routes, maps, markings and source references. Colour edition. Spiral Bound, 410 pp.
In 1998 a photocopied version of Dorothy Sanderson’s exhibit, “Cross-Border Mail: Canada — United States of America 1800-1860,” was released as Volume 7 in the BNAPS Exhibit Series. With the advent of more affordable colour printing and improvements in home computer applications, Dorothy considered that it might be possible to re-publish the exhibit, enhanced with more recent acquisitions in the form of a postal history book, this time with colour illustrations. She approached her friend and colleague, Malcolm Montgomery, with her idea and he agreed to help with the preparation, including scanning her collection. BNAPS’ newest book, A History of Cross-Border Postal Communication between Canada and the United States of America — 1761 – 1875, is the result.
While mail between Canada and the United States has been addressed before, for example in the Boggs and Jephcott, Greene & Young books, and also in several published collections, the history of cross-border mail and authorities for the information that accompanied the illustrations has often been neglected.
With his background in TransAtlantic postal history, Malcolm recognized this and persuaded Dorothy that the new book would be much more worthwhile if it included sections explaining the postal history of the services, with detailed references, to complement the notes that had accompanied her original collection. Over time the original project expanded to cover the cross-border mails of Canada, the Maritime Provinces, Newfoundland and British Columbia.
Sadly, Dorothy passed away in 2006, not long after the work was started. Malcolm has carried on with the project and BNAPS is very pleased to announce the release of A History of Cross-Border Postal Communication between Canada and the United States Of America — 1761-1875. It is believed to be the first book to treat the history of cross-border mail as a subject in its own right, encompassing all BNA provinces and covering:
- the history of border relations between the Canada and the United States (with detailed sources, where known)
- an examination of the border itself, how it changed and developed
- the routes along and across the border
- the exchange offices
- the postal rates of all the nations and provinces involved, to 1875
- the postal marks employed on both sides of the border
- a preliminary survey of the express companies (to encourage a more comprehensive study)
- cross-border elements important to trans-Atlantic mail and inter-Provincial mails
The volume’s colour illustrations include extracts from contemporary maps showing the routes, accurate reproductions of the pertinent postal markings, and over 220 colour plates illustrating covers drawn from a number of different collections. A further 73 pages of Appendices contain the original text of extracts from treaties and other papers of relevance to borders.
The late Dorothy Sanderson became a physician in the days when British women were not expected to have careers in medicine beyond nursing or administration. Widely travelled, she had varied interests including wildflowers, theatre and cinema, classical music and books, particularly about art, but also history, biography and every kind of fiction. As a small girl, she graduated from recovering handbills and fliers from her neighbours’ letter-boxes to full fledged philately. She was most famous and will be best remembered for her stamp and postal history collections, her presentations and competition entries. Dorothy was a member of many philatelic societies including the Royal of London, the Postal History Society (GB), the Society of Postal Historians, the Disinfected Mail Study Group and the Canadian Philatelic Society of Great Britain. Overseas, she belonged to the Postal History Society of Canada and the British North America Philatelic Society. She attended meetings regularly and usually displayed parts of her many collections: Medicine on Stamps, Hampshire Postal History, Canadian Stamps and, most famously, the postal history of Canada, the Maritime Provinces, trans-Atlantic mails and Cross-Border – the last probably her favourite.
Dorothy won many awards for her collections in the United Kingdom and around the world. She died 26 January 2006 after a stroke. She had made many friends through her work and her diverse interests; she was a very accomplished woman who will be remembered for a long time.
Malcolm Montgomery is a retired British Army officer who served in the Middlesex Regiment, with tours of duty during his latter years in the Army at Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe and the Ministry of Defence, identifying the users’ requirements for computer support in Command and control. For his Army service to his country he was made a member of the Order of the British Empire. While a schoolboy in Austria, where he lived when his father was stationed there, Malcolm formed a collection of stamps, first Austrian, and then Canadian. Later in life the stamps of Canada took over as his main interest until he realized that, on an Army Officer’s salary, he would never complete the collection. Instead he began to study postal history, mainly the postal history of the trans-Atlantic services between the United Kingdom and British North America. His interest led to his becoming the Editor of the newsletter of the TransAtlantic Mail Study Group of BNAPS during the 1900s. It also led to his meeting Dorothy Sanderson, and his involvement in preparing ‘A History of Cross-Border Postal Communication between Canada and the United States Of America – 1761 – 1875’.
Malcolm says that the book is “likely the first written by somebody who does not collect” the material covered. Anyone reading the volume will find it difficult to believe that statement.