Discussion Civil War era patriotic envelopes.

major bill

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Forum Host
Aug 25, 2012
I understand that Civil War era patriotic envelopes are collectable but had never thought of them as history. Tonight the Ann Arbor Civil War Round Table Zoom meeting had Leon Reed as a guest speaker. Reed is the author of The book uses 300 Civil War era patriotic envelopes to trace public opinion about the secession movement and how the public saw the Civil War. Many of these patriotic envelopes look a bit like cartoons on an editorial page. Reed's theory is that printers brought out envelopes that people wanted to purchase and that what sold well can give us some insight about the attitude of they people who purchased these. I found this an interesting theory.

I always enjoyed the colorful Civil War era patriotic envelopes but never gave any thought about them adding insight in to the conflict. There were more Northern patriotic envelopes due to the larger number of big printing companies in the North but some of the Southern patriotic envelopes Leon Reed showed us were interesting. Due to the lower quantity of Southern patriotic envelopes I assume they are more costly especially the rarer Southern envelopes. Now I want to purchase No Greater Calamity for the Country: North-South Conflict, Secession, and the Onset of Civil War.