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Страноведческий материал к урокам:"UNCLE SAM"

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UNCLE SAM


Who is the man in the picture?

What is he wearing?

Do you think this man is real?

Uncle Sam is a tall, thin man. He's an older man with white hair and a white beard. He often wears a tall hat, a bow tie, and the stars and stripes of the American flag.

Who is this strange-looking man? Would you believe that Uncle Sam is the U.S. government? But why do we call the U.S. government Uncle Sam?

During the War of 1812, the U.S. government hired meat packers to provide meat to the army. One of these meat packers was a man named Samuel Wilson. Samuel was a friendly and fair man. Everyone liked him and called him Uncle Sam.

Sam Wilson stamped the boxes of meat for the army with a large U.S.—for United States. Some government inspectors came to look over Sam's company. They asked a worker what the U.S. on the boxes stood for. As a joke, the worker answered that these letters stood for the name of his boss, Uncle Sam.

The joke spread, and soldiers began saying that their food came from Uncle Sam. Before long, people called all things that came from the government "Uncle Sams." "Uncle Sam" became a nickname for the U.S. government.

Soon there were drawings and cartoons of Uncle Sam in newspapers. In these early pictures, Uncle Sam was a young man. He wore stars and stripes, but his hair was dark and he had no beard. The beard was added when Abraham Lincoln was President. President Lincoln had a beard.

The most famous picture of Uncle Sam is on a poster from World War I. The government needed men to fight in the war. In the poster, a very serious Uncle Sam points his finger and says, "I want YOU for the U.S. Army."

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