How should I capitalize a salutation in a letter?

Note: This post relates to content in the eighth edition of the MLA Handbook. For up-to-date guidance, see the ninth edition of the MLA Handbook.

The MLA provides style recommendations for research papers. For guidance on how to capitalize salutations addressed to various categories of persons (e.g., religious, governmental, military), consult Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary (“Forms of Address”). For categories not covered, such as salutations used to address a group of people (e.g., “To my students”), consult a reference on business-writing or letter-writing conventions.

Work Cited

“Forms of Address.” Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 11th ed., Merriam-Webster, 2004, pp. 1618–22.