Trailblazing: 100 Years of Our National Parks

National Postal Museum
May 12, 2016
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Handwritten and stamped envelope
National Postal Museum

Fort Monroe Union naval cover, 1862
Fort Monroe National Monument, Virginia


Fort Monroe in southern Virginia guarded the entrance to the James River and Chesapeake Bay. It was so large and well-defended that the Confederate States never attempted to conquer it, even though leaving it in Union hands cut the capital at Richmond off from the sea. This envelope was addressed to a U.S. Navy surgeon stationed there.

Credit: National Postal Museum