It is little known that the American Civil War precipitated the largest expansion in U.S. postal service to date. Between the commerce generated by the war and the correspondence between soldiers and their families (it was an official government policy to require soldiers to write to their families) the use of the postal system bloomed. One of the curious effects of its increased popularity was the production of patriotic envelopes, a daily reminder of the division from which the country suffered. Very early in the war, these deal with the early issues involved with the war rather than the actual conflict. Subjects include unity of the Union or the inability of the Confederacy to do what they attempt to do-whether it is pay for the war, or defeat the North. Each with a color (unless otherwise indicated) scene or motif on the left side, usually occupying about a third of the face. Each about excellent with very minor wear/deterioration from age and handling only. Sizes vary somewhat but average about 3" x 5". Particularly well engraved bi color image of the flag with Liberty cap surrounded by a sunrise with clouds below.