Guatemala : 40th Anniversary of ICAO


Issue date: 02/04/1987




Aviateca (the Guatemalan Airline) Boeing 727-100C and ICAO 40th anniversary emblem; passengers getting off the plane.


Aviateca (the Guatemalan Airline) Boeing 727-100C and ICAO 40th anniversary emblem; aircraft in preparation.



Blocks of four stamps, with marginal


Official First Day Cover, showing the emblem of the Dirección General de Correos y Telégrafos.









Private issue. More information on the errors found on this cover can be obtained by clicking on the following link: Guatemala - 40th Anniversary of ICAO and First Day Cover - Guatemala - 1987.


Postcard part of an attractive collection of more than 160 different "Stamps of All Nations" stamped cards (FDI, First Day of Issue), each bearing a 100% genuine 1980s-era stamp (often pictorially) postmarked on the first day of issue. Each card shows the country's national flag at left, with, on the back, interesting narrative about the country in English and French.

Guatemala's flag contains three equal vertical bands of light blue, white, and light blue with the coat of arms centered in the white band. The blue bands of the flag stand for the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean; the blue and white are the original colours used by the United Provinces of Central America.



Circulated cover. Cancel on first day of issue, i.e. 24 April 1987.


Background: This country still calculated ICAO’s 40th anniversary on the basis of the constitution of the new permanent International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) on 4 April 1947, although, since its fortieth anniversary, ICAO had decided to commemorate the anniversaries on the basis of the ending date of the Chicago Conference, i.e. 7 December 1944.

The two stamps issued by Guatemala for the 40th anniversary show Aviateca Boeing 727-100C aircraft. Aviateca, known until 1974 as Aviateca Empresa Guatemalteca de Aviación, was established as the state airline on 14 March 1945 to succeed to Aerovías de Guatemala founded in 1929. Aviateca acquired in 1980 two Boeing 727-100C (registered TG-ALA and TG-AYA in Guatemala) from Eastern Air Lines. United Airlines had shown a great deal of enthusiasm for this aircraft and considerably influenced its final configuration; Eastern Air Lines was also a potential customer. Airline services with the original Model 727-100 were initiated by Eastern Air Lines on 1 February 1964, with United Airlines following only a few days later.

Guatemala issued its first postage stamps in 1871. The quetzal, a colourful bird that is the national emblem of Guatemala, first appeared on the stamps of 1878 and has been depicted at frequent intervals since that time. Adopted in 1968, the coat of arms includes a green and red quetzal perched on a scroll bearing the inscription LIBERTAD 15 DE SEPTIEMBRE DE 1821 (the original declaration date of independence from Spain), all superimposed on a pair of crossed rifles and a pair of crossed swords and framed by a wreath. The quetzal symbolizes freedom; the weapons represent the defence of liberty.