Mail Troubles of the Civil War

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Mail Troubles of the Civil War The nation’s communication system was cut in two when the civil war began in 1861. Mail was very important in boosting most soldier’s morale. Writing letters was soldier’s link between Civil War camps and battlefields and “back home” (Civil War). Many soldiers had never been this far from home and would often feel very homesick. Staying in touch with their loved ones helped them from getting too sad and reminded them that they weren’t forgotten. Some of them wrote home weekly and used much of their free time writing. (Civil War). “A letter from home could be tucked close to soldiers’ hearts to be read when feeling homesick” (Civil War). Many also carried letters to be sent to loved ones if they were to die…show more content…
Confederate postage was then no longer accepted by the Northern postal services, and if received was to be forwarded to the Dead Letter Office to be returned to senders (Nation Divided). To overcome this issue, the southern states created their own postal service. John H. Reagan became their postmaster general and changed 8,535 of the United States’ 28,586 post offices to confederate leadership (Confederate Postal System). He tried to employ southern supporters from the U.S. Post Office so they could bring maps, reports, forms and plans that could help jumpstart the new postal service (Confederate Postal System). Beginning using U.S. money and postage, they soon ran into more problems as result to North attempting to even further punish the South for seceding. “U.S. postage issued before the war was stripped of its value to ensure that stamps in Confederate hands would be valueless” (Nation Divided). The North began producing new postage to be accepted only in the Union territory. The South, now without a form of postage, had to create their own postage system. While this postage system was in the making, local postmasters issued provisional stamps or wrote “paid” on envelopes (Nation Divided). Confederate stamps were available in October of 1861 (Confederate Postal System). The stamps were printed several places
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