What is Uncle Sam?
Uncle Sam is a fictional character who represents the United States government. His predecessor was a character named Brother Jonathan.
How Does Uncle Sam Work?
The name "Uncle Sam" is associated with Samuel Wilson, a meat packer from Troy, New York. Wilson supplied beef to the U.S. Army during the War of 1812 and he stamped the barrels with "U.S." Apparently, soliders began joking that initials meant that the food was from "Uncle Sam." The media published this, which helped the term become the official nickname for the U.S. government.
Image courtesy of the Library of Congress.
Why Does Uncle Sam Matter?
Uncle Sam is not just a symbol of the U.S. government. He is also a patriotic symbol of the unity and strength of the United States.