Prominent U.S. and Confederate Statesman
Captured in 1861, this international event became known as the Trent Affair!
Free frank signature
(1798-1871) Descended from a very prominent Virginia family, he studied law and later served as a U.S. Senator and Congressman. While a senator, he drafted the "Fugitive Slave Act" in 1850. As a member of Confederate Congress, he was sent to France in 1861 with John Slidell, to try and gain the support of France for the Confederate cause. The two diplomats were seized on the high seas while onboard the British mail steamer "Trent," which resulted in what is called the "Trent Affair," a highly publicized event that almost started off another war between the U.S. and England. This episode also created a great deal of sympathy for the Confederacy in Great Britain.
Free Frank Signature: 4 3/4 x 2 3/4, postal envelope that has been signed at the upper right, Free, J.M. Mason. Addressed to Miss Chew, Germantown, Philadelphia Co., Pennsylvania. C.D.S., Free, Jan. 26. Detailed docket on the reverse, Rec'd Jany. 1852, J.M.M. note enclosed dated Jany. 20th, 1852, note for $5.00. Much more content. Apparently the envelope was used as an account ledger by the recipient. Includes a red wax seal with the initial "M" on it no doubt for Mason.