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Unformatted text preview: ch means, “The related term refers to the implicit, conventional second meaning of the
sign, imposed by specific culture (ibid.).
In the case of Uncle Sam, the denotation is the picture (figure) of a man. If pictured in a whole
figure, as a tall man. He is portrayed as middle-aged, older man with white hair. On some
pictures he wears a goatee beard. If interpreted in terms of connotation, it can be viewed as the
obvious resemblance of Abraham Lincoln. Another denotative attribute of the figure of Uncle
Sam is his top hat. The colors of his outfit are red blue and white, in combination with stars
and stripes, attributes of American flag. This connotates the symbolization of the American
patriotic values. Alton Ketchum describes the process of making Uncle Sam’s image.
As for visual evocations of Uncle Sam, the earliest Albert Matthews had been able to
find had been an 1852 cartoon by Frank H. T. Bellew. Actually, the earliest appeared
twenty years earlier. It was an unsigned lithograph issued in 1832 entitled 'Uncle Sam
in Danger'. […] Like most cartoons of the period, this is an attack on Jackson. He has
just opened a vein in the right arm of the seated Uncle Sam, who is smooth-shaven,
rather young, and attired in a striped robe. A later version elaborates the theme. Uncle
Sam is older, and his robe is definitely the American flag (Ketchum 24). 23 24 By carrying all the denotative attributes of United States, Uncle Sam’s image conveys in his considerably. In 1973 they started a meatpacking business. His business as well as his family figures the meaning of the symbol. Thus fulfills the “storage” function of symbol. His image grew considerably. He also went into groceries, dry goods and distilling business. (Ketchum “stores” all the denotative information about the United States. 21-22).
When the 1812 conflict broke out were the E&S Wilson able to compete for
governmental contract for war supplies. Ketchum describes the cituation of the times. 3.2 History of Uncle Sam.
War Department records show that a general contract was issued to one Elbert
Although figure of Uncle Sam is non living, several historians have proved that there Anderson to supply all rations for the army in NewYork and New Jersey for one year. lived a person who was the predecessor of this now US national character. As the authors of The Wilsons got the meat portion ofthat contract. It was agreed that all barrels were to Uncle Sam: An American Autobiography web page project mention, “Like many be stamped 'E. A.'for Elbert Anderson and 'U.S.' for United States. The 'U.S.' mythological and symbolic figures, Uncle Sam has origins in actual fact and, in this case, an
actual man (http://xroads.virginia.edu/~CAP/SAM/home.htm.).
Alton Ketchum has conducted an extensive research of the portraits of Uncle Sam in the
fifties which led him to the origins of this character. This led him to the writing Uncle Sam,
The Man and The legend. He found and proved the connection with the living person and the
symbolic figure. Ketchum decided to follow the lead of a folk tale that “the character of Uncle
Sam had originated in Troy, New York during the War of 1812” (Ketchum 21).
The search for the origins of Uncle Sam was uncertain at first. It took several years of
extensive research in the archives of American Antiquarian Society, but the author of this
research was successful and was able to prove al the bibliographical data.
Americas “favorite uncle” was born in Menotomy (now Arlington) Massachusetts, on
September 13th 1766. This place is one of the most significant places in the American history.
The revolution fights took place here. He spent his childhood in Massachusetts and New
Hampshire as a seventh child of the family. In the age of 21 he decided to make a living, earn
a fortune and he moved with his brother Ebenezer to Troy, New York. This town was due to
its strategic position a center of navigation and industry. Brothers established a brick-yard on abbreviated the usual marking, which had been 'U.States' (Ketchum 21-22).
The way how the abbreviation from the barrel came to be the nick name for the symbol of the
United States was described in by a correspondent in the New York Gazette on May 12th,
This work fell to the lot of a facetious fellow in the employ of the Messrs. Wilson,
who on being asked by some of his fellow workmen the meaning of the mark.., said
that he did not know, unless it meant Elbert Anderson and Uncle Sam... The joke took
among the workmen, passed currently and 'Uncle Sam' himself being present, was
occasionally rallied by them on the increasing extent of his possessions... It originated
precisely as above stated, and the writer of this article distinctly recollects remarking,
at the time when it first appeared in print, how...
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This document was uploaded on 03/20/2014.
- Spring '14
- The American