Uncle Sam

UncleSam_Full.pngJust in time for Independence Day, Gettysburg Flag Works sent us a note highlighting their recent blog entry with a brief history of ol’ Sam Wilson, who put the “Sam” in “Uncle Sam.”  The full entry is here.

Gettysburg Flag Works is located in East Greenbush, not too far from the encampment where, during the War of 1812, it is believed that the provisions stamped for the “U.S.” crossed up with the nickname “Uncle Sam,” and the appellation for our national symbol was born. Although one of the cantonment buildings still stands as a private residence, East Greenbush doesn’t say much about its role in history; Troy, on the other hand, is all about Uncle Sam Wilson, and the graphic at left includes a number of Uncle Sam-related sites in the Collar City.


  1. anomiedysthymia

    It’s funny that Gettysburg Flag Works has “Uncle Sam’s False Grave” on the map. That’s Roadside America’s name for what Troy once called the “Uncle Sam Historic Site” – composed of a rusty, vague historical marker placed at the corner of River and Ferry in 1962 and the sandblasted cornerstone of an 1872 bridge that was found during its demolition. It’s a “park” created by the NYS Department of Transportation around 1972 despite opposition from residents of the adjacent Taylor Apartments. It was supposed to have limestone walkways and “plantings of ancient ginkgo and modern honey locust trees.” Whether it ever did, I don’t know. Roadside America describes the area as “a litter-blown plot of pavement hemmed in by the approaches to the bridge, next to a housing project, and only accessible through a pedestrian tunnel from a small parking lot.”
    “Uncle Sam Vacant Lot” and “Uncle Sam Chamber Pot” on the map are also from Roadside America. I might have added the Uncle Sam Bike Trail, and some Uncle Sam-related interpretive signs on Congress and in Prospect Park.

  2. Carl

    Good point. I hadn’t even given much thought to the Uncle Sam Bike Trail, though in fairness it isn’t much of a trail.

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