Confederate blockade-run cover
This letter went via Nassau ("Forwarded by S.A. Unders & Son"), most likely carried by the Cunard steamer Corsica from Havana on October 24, 1863, and arrived in Nassau on October 26. From Nassau it was carried by the blockade runner Scotia (II), which left Nassau around November 8 and arrived in Wilmington, North Carolina, on November 12, 1863. At Wilmington it was handstamped "Ship" with "12" in manuscript for the Confederate rate (ten cents plus a two-cent fee to the ship captain) that was due upon delivery, and then placed in the mails for Savannah, Georgia.
The origin of the letter is uncertain, but other correspondence in the National Postal Museum collection and the docketing at the left side—"Sarah T"—makes it appear to be Sarah Taylor. Sarah may have lived in New Orleans, which was under Union control after April 1862. Therefore, the letter might have originated in New Orleans, was carried to Nassau (probably in a separate envelope), and then carried via blockade runner to Wilmington.
It is also interesting to note that the Scotia (II), which carried this letter, had five out of six successful trips in the 10/63-3/64 period. On its unlucky last trip (March 1, 1864), the USS Connecticut captured it coming out of Wilmington.