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Other Ephemera




This is the only collection of its kind on the internet and quite possibly the largest collection of Canadian Pacific ads outside of the CPR Archives.  It provides a fascinating insight not only into the services that Canadian Pacific offered, but also of the allure of travelling by rail and sea across the country and across the world.

  • Click thumbnails on the ad pages to view larger images.  Internet Explorer users may want to make sure that the browser's preferences are set to expand the larger image to its actual size (rather than to fit within the browser window). 

  • Scanned ads with gray borders are from the personal collection of the site's creator, Peter Marshall.  Images with black borders have been compiled from various ephemera retailer sites and various eBay auctions. 

  • As a general rule, only full-page ads have been included on this site.  CPR also published some partial-page ads but they were usually variations on the full-page ads and are only included if they contain original information or illustrations of note.)

  • Only colour versions are shown for collection ads that were published both in colour and black & white. 

  • Only large format versions are shown for collection ads that appeared in large and small magazine formats. 

  • Most images have been enhanced to remove the yellowing of the original ad's paper stock.

  • Publication dates are based on publication information found on the ad pages or on dates provided by the ad seller.  If neither was available then "circa" dates were established by comparing content with similar ads or, if necessary, by examining the content of the ad (or of the ads on the reverse side of the page) for time period clues.

  • Reference numbers are the author's (unofficial) system for grouping ads by campaign.

Advertisement Dating 

An excellent way of dating an advertisement is by its branding.  The statistics below are compiled from a review of the ads in my collection and should be able to date any item within a 10-year period. 

Logos & Icons

CPR corporate logos very rarely appeared on advertising so they are not very useful for dating ads. 

Slogans & Taglines

Ads from 1927 to 1951 commonly featured one of the following taglines:

  1. "(The) World's Greatest Travel System" seems to have started in 1927 and continued to 1958 when it was modified to "The World's Most Complete Transportation System".  (It is also included in the company's corporate logo from 1929 to 1945.)

  2. "Spans the World" overlapped with the above tagline from 1946 to 1951.  (This roughly coincides with the tagline's appearance on the corporate logo from 1946 until 1949.)   It appeared with the following "intermodal" icon

Note that the icon did not feature the airplane until December 1947.

A variation of this tagline - "It Spans the World" - appeared in some 1923 and 1927 ads.

Corporate Font  

There was no standard font used until the cursive font came into use. Although the cursive font ("modern script-style" according to the description on the CP web site) was used for the Canadian Pacific name in corporate logos from 1946-1959, it appeared on ads starting in 1934. For the first three years ad designers experimented with the font until the style shown here became standard in 1938. In 1959 it was replaced by a modified version that was more streamlined and less hand-written.




Canadian Pacific corporate font and "Spans the World" logo reproduced courtesy of Canadian Pacific