White Sulphur Springs, Virginia: circa 1857. Unbound. This envelope bears a stunning blue advertising cameo of the Montgomery White Sulphur Springs resort. It is franked with an 1857 3-cent, dull red Type III or possibly Type IV Washington stamp (Scott #26) that is tied to the cover with a circular White Sulphur Springs postmark (no year identified). It is addressed to Russellville, East Tennessee. The stamp is scuffed and soiled along its wide right margin. The envelope is lightly soiled. Good to Very Good. Item #008928
In the 19th century, Montgomery County, Virginia, was a thriving resort destination due to the presence of several hot springs hotels. Montgomery White Sulphur Springs, which opened near Blacksburg and Christiansburg in 1855, was one of the largest with a 1,000 guest capacity. Access to the resort was easy via the Tennessee-Virginia Railroad which dropped off guests at the small Big Tunnel Stations (Montgomery); there, guests boarded gravity powered cars for the downhill trip to the resort. During the Civil War, the resort was used as an important General Hospital for the Confederacy that, at its peak, held 700 sick, wounded, and recovering soldiers. Quite scarce. As of 2017, there is only one philatelic auction record of a similar cover. An example with a green cameo advertisement sold for $1,250 at a Schuyler J. Rumsey auction in March, 2017. Some flaws to the stamp on this example so priced accordingly.