bc newsletter

The British Columbia Postal History Newsletter, edited for many years by Bill Topping, is now in its twenty-fifth year. I took over as editor with issue #89. Tracy Cooper is associate editor. We publish four issues per year. Each issue, on average, consists of 16 pages. A digital PDF edition in full colour is produced, as well as a printed edition with several colour pages. Digital editions are free. To receive a printed edition you must join the BC Postal History Study Group and pay a modest fee to cover the costs of printing and mailing. Further details can be found in the newsletter.

We aim to feature most aspects of BC postal history in the newsletter, from colonial times to the most recent post office developments. It’s not possible to cover everything in a single issue, of course, but over the course of a year we hope to run articles on all eras, from Victorian to Elizabethan, and look at such topics as little known rates and routes; post office history and administration; significant “discoveries” of all kinds, including rare and previously unreported markings; new office openings and closings; important auction results; technological change—anything, in fact, that will add to our knowledge base in this field of study. We encourage collectors and other interested individuals to submit articles, queries and ideas, and write about intriguing items; every issue we plan to run a section on “favourite” covers.

To give you a feel for the newsletter, I’ve posted a few thumbnails of various pages (click on a thumbnail to bring up a full-size image). In recent issues, for instance, we’ve published longer articles on the use of Large Queen stamps in BC; the postal history of the mining community of Surf Inlet on remote Princess Royal Island; new split-ring discoveries from Magoffin Spur, Spiller River, Hockin Landing and Hilliam; railway post office patronage in the 1890s; an 1864 letter from a Royal Navy officer commanding a gunboat on the BC coast; WWI civil censorship; and early (1859) mail from the BC mainland.

Issue 91

Issue 92

Issue 93


To preview or download current and archival issues (before issue #89, newsletters are in black & white only), go to this site and then click on “back issues.” Download sizes vary but are mostly smaller than 1.5 Mb.