Uncle Sam

Brooklyn, History

September 7th is often credited with being the date, in 1813, that the United States received its moniker Uncle Sam. It’s said that upstate New York butcher Samuel Wilson was the real-life inspiration behind the unofficial “human face” of the U.S. Government. The Troy, NY butcher supposedly stamped cuts of meat he delivered to American troops during the War of 1812 with the initials “U.S.” But the NY Times tells us that a Nebraska professor who has been tracing the origin of the top-hatted elder statesman has turned up an earlier reference. History professor and War of 1812 expert Donald R. Hickey from Wayne State College brings the origin of Uncle Sam back to New York City–the nation’s first capital–and a young midshipman’s use of the Navy slang of the day.

So what’s the Brooklyn story?

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