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Patriotic Covers

Printers on both sides of the conflict created illustrated stationery supporting their cause. These "Patriotic" envelopes often included emblems such as flags and political leaders. Some used illustrations to mock or attack the other side. 

Illustrated stationery reveals the strong emotions generated by the Civil War. In the North envelopes bearing patriotic illustrations appeared even before hostilities broke out. Soon after the war began, Southern stationers quickly marketed patriotic envelopes picturing flags, cannons, political leaders, slogans, soldiers, and caricatures, among other war-related themes.

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Examples of Union Patriotic Envelopes

  • an envelope with an illustration of a Union soldier in blue next to the US flag
  • Latest News from the South. The Union feeling is increasing.- envelope with cartoon
  • envelope with an image of Washington on one side with a flag that say 1776, labeled The Past, and a soldier with a flag that says 1861 on the other side labeled The Present

Examples of Confederate Patriotic Envelopes

  • envelope with a Confederate flag that says Now or Never
  • envelope with the Confederate flag and the words Jeff. Davis, Prest. Alexr H. Stephens. Vice Prest.
  • envelope with the Confederate flag

This exhibit, once part of Binding the Nation, is no longer on display in the museum. It is still available online.