A pioneer in Canadian commercial aviation and one of the country’s most noteworthy aerial photographers, Harry Oakman, owner of the Peterborough Post Card Co., worked nationwide often taking aerial and motel images, during the 1940s-1960s. His cards are often distinguished by an Oakman logo bearing the image of an airplane at bottom right. Thanks to Ron Barrons, we have a few Oakman postcards in our collection.
Mr. Oakman founded the Peterborough Municipal Airport, which grew from a 1950s airstrip which he built on farmland, purchased just south of Peterborough. His postcard company produced approx. 200 million postcards. For his pioneer aviation efforts and Canadian tourism promotion via postcards, the Peterborough airport terminal was renamed as the “Harry Oakman Building” in 1999.
Oakman used custom-made cameras he designed which allowed him to fly and take photographs simultaneously. In the 1960s, he was commissioned by Brewer’s Retail to photograph every Ontario city and town which had a “Beer Store”; to this day, many framed, poster-sized prints from this series decorate “Beer Stores.” He was featured in a 1994 issue of Kegs and Cases, the Brewer’s Retail magazine.
Marmora’s beer store had such a photo which has disappeared. Any idea of its whereabouts?
Oakman was also a Canadian boat racing champion and a tool and die maker. His photographic collection, purchased by an Oshawa cartography company, Map Art Corporation, is one of the largest of its kind in the world.
Information from Vintagepostcards.org