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The Man Who Would Become Uncle Sam – Podcast #220

00:00:01 Steve Silverman

If I were to mention the name of Uncle Sam, you’d most likely get this image of a stern elderly man with a white beard. You know, he’s wearing a top hat that’s adorned with stars and a blue jacket, and he is pointing directly back at you.

But did you know that Uncle Sam, the name synonymous with the US government, is believed to have originated from a real person named Samuel Wilson? And believe it or not, he lived just a short distance from my house in the city of Troy, New York.

And with July 4th, our Independence Day, just around the corner, I thought it’d be fun to go in search of the real Uncle Sam. I mean, who is this man?

Well, our guide for this Uncle Sam tour is Kathy Sheehan, the historian for both Rensselaer County and the City of Troy. Kathy is also the executive director of the Hart Cluett Museum, which is the Rensselaer County Museum and is operated by the Rensselaer County Historical Society.

Kathy was last a guest on this podcast about two years ago, and that’s when we were recorded, episode #178. In it, we debunked many of the myths surrounding Russell Sage.

This time she is going to take us to locations in and around the city of Troy that played a significant part in the life of Uncle Sam Wilson.

And I have to tell you, aside from our first and last stops, I really didn’t know where Kathy was taking me, but she had a fantastic story to tell.

So, join Kathy and me as we take to the road and go in search of The Man Who Would Become Uncle Sam.

00:01:42 Steve Silverman

I met up with Kathy Sheehan just outside of the two 19th-century townhouses that make up the Hart Cluett Museum. These buildings, like so many others in the historic part of the city, are just spectacular to look at. If you’ve ever seen the HBO series The Gilded Age, then you’ve not only seen the exterior of the museum, but you’ve also seen quite a number of the buildings on the surrounding streets. A little side note is that Kathy served as the historical advisor, although I’m not sure of her official title, she served as a historical advisor for the series while they were filming in Troy.

Now, if you’re not familiar with Troy, New York, the city is located on the eastern bank of the Hudson River, about 135 miles or 217 kilometers, directly north of New York City.

Our state capital, which is Albany, it’s on the opposite side of the river and it’s about 5 miles or 8 kilometers downstream. In other words, closer to New York City.

The story that Kathy is about to tell you is of two brothers, Ebenezer and Samuel Wilson, and they moved from New Hampshire to Troy in 1789. That just happened to be the same year that the city adopted the name of Troy.

The brothers, they found great success in Troy, both in brick making and in the packing of meats. But how Samuel Wilson eventually became known as Uncle Sam is quite the story, and that’s what Kathy is about to explain.

Our first stop was on Mount Ida in Troy’s Prospect Park, and it spans 80 acres and sits high up on the bank of the river. From there one can see the entire city, which lies about 250 feet or 75 meters below.

Just a quick note before I play the audio: there was a technical problem with the wireless microphones I intended to use. Basically, one of the two mics wouldn’t connect so I had to turn to Plan B. What that meant is I had to use a handheld recorder with lower audio quality, so you may hear some distortion and I do apologize for that.

One other thing I should mention is that Kathy talks about the Wilson’s grazing fields extending all the way to Hoosick Street from the park. That’s about one mile or 1.6 kilometers away from where we were standing. In other words, they owned a huge farm.

Anyway, let’s join up with Kathy in Prospect Park.

So, Kathy, thanks for joining me again on the podcast, and here we are in Prospect Park. And before we dive into Uncle Sam, I thought we did a little disclaimer about Uncle Sam. So why don’t you quickly talk about he’s not necessarily the only claim for Uncle Sam.

00:04:24 Kathy Sheehan

Well, it’s interesting, and thank you for having me on this podcast. I enjoy this. It’s interesting because we have two different stories here. We have the story about Samuel Wilson who was here in Troy, and we also have the legend story about Uncle Sam. And there are several communities that will claim the fame of Uncle Sam, who is the progenitor of our nation’s symbol. And we’ll get into that a little bit later into this podcast. But yes, other communities around the country as well as even internationally, have claimed that they are the official home of Uncle Sam, and I say that with air quotes.

00:05:01 Steve Silverman

So why don’t you quickly describe where we’re standing?

00:05:03 Kathy Sheehan

Well, we are on Mount Ida, which is one of the high-elevation points in Troy and it is now known as Prospect Park. And this is where Ebenezer and Samuel Wilson, who arrived over from Massachusetts in 1789 as Troy was just becoming a village, officially becoming a village named Troy.

And then they have these fruit orchards up here, and then they started getting into the business of grazing beef and pork. So, there was the grazing lands extended north from where we are all the way over to Hoosick Street on the area, people who are familiar with the area of 8th Street. So those are the grazing lands. And they had a small cabin up here. And so, this was their very first home. It was up here on land that had belonged to Philip Heartt, no relation to our Hart Cluett Museum, but HEARTT. So, this is the first home.

00:06:18 Steve Silverman

Now one part of the story that I keep reading over and over again is that Ebenezer and Samuel, that they walked all the way here from New Hampshire. Now even driving that distance is several hours today. So, do you want to talk about that a bit?

00:06:30 Kathy Sheehan

You know legends as they grow and it sounds very, you know, romantic and exciting that and adventurous that these two young men are crossing the mountains on foot… Probably wasn’t true. Everybody had horses. And you would basically, you would refresh the horses, people rented them, buyed them, swapped them. You know, there was all sorts of different things that people did to bring your horses. You know, they’re able to keep their main horses. And you took your time getting here. So, I think that is probably not true. I think that just kind of rolls into the legend of Uncle Sam. You know, this kind of romanticized vision of what was going on in the early, you know, late 18th century.

00:07:10 Steve Silverman

So, we’re way up high on the bank, you know, way up above Troy. We’re above the city itself. Now where we’re standing, there’s trees everywhere. You really can’t see very far. Was it like that when they were here?

00:07:22 Kathy Sheehan

Oh, gosh, no, no. This was all cleared and you could see as you could see south and over to the Helderbergs, and you could see north up to the Adirondacks, and west out to the Mohawk Valley. It really was really this high ground, was unobstructed view. It’s only been in the last 60 years that a lot of these trees have grown up as the park really came into place. It was all open.

And there was clay on the side of the hill. Again, they were they were mining. Mining the clay, you know, taking, taking the clay off the side of the hill for various things. Not only just for brick making but then they were taking the topsoil off to fill in different areas of the city as neighborhoods grew up as well. So yeah, no, it was pretty open.

00:08:05 Steve Silverman

And the population was very small at that time, I would assume.

00:08:07 Kathy Sheehan

Yeah, we only had a couple thousand people at that time when they came in, but it has started to grow very rapidly because Troy is really at the headwaters of the Hudson River. So, Troy almost in effect really kind of becomes a port city. So, it becomes a very important conduit, and certainly by 1824 when the Erie Canal opens that it, everything really explodes. You know, we’re really a crossroads trade route here.

00:08:30 Steve Silverman

Now I know nobody can see where we are because it’s audio, but can you just kind of describe where their cabin would have been?

00:08:35 Kathy Sheehan

Yeah. So, we’re at the north end of the park, of Prospect Park, now on Mount Ida and there’s kind of a rise on the ground and which is actually where the some of the foundations of the Warren Mansion. The Warrens were the next family who came up here on the park and really built their house pretty much almost in the same footprint as Samuel and Ebenezer’s little cottage. Theirs was a much grander Gothic revival, beautiful summer home. Thinking about coming up out of the city. They had a home down in the flats, in downtown. And then they had another home up here.

00:09:14 Steve Silverman

We then hopped into the car and drove a short distance to the park’s Uncle Sam memorial, but I have to tell you the best part of this location is not the memorial, it’s the view. Let’s listen in.

So, Kathy, we changed location, so why don’t you describe where we are?

The gentle rise between the trees was the location of Ebeneezer and Samuel Wilson's cabin on Mt. Ida. Today, it is located in Prospect Park in Troy, NY.
The gentle rise between the trees was the location of Ebenezer and Samuel Wilson’s cabin on Mt. Ida. Today, it is located in Prospect Park in Troy, NY.

00:09:28 Kathy Sheehan

We are at the western slopes of Mount Ida. Still up here in Prospect Park. And we are looking at downtown Troy. And to the west we can see the Congress Street Bridge, and West Troy, and Watervliet, all the way up to Latham. If you really craned our head, we can kind of see the foothills of the Adirondacks on a good day. And just below us is where all this brick came from. This, again, is all clay, clay hills here.

And so, this is where Samuel and Ebenezer started their brick factory that made the bricks for the courthouse and several other early buildings that were here. And he lived, his house on Ferry Street, and where he died in 1854 was just below the hill on the right on Ferry Street. That house was torn down during urban renewal.

00:10:18 Steve Silverman

And what I’ll do is I’ll put a picture of what we’re looking at on my website, uselessinformation.org. But Kathy grew up around here and my wife and I have come to this park many times over the years. We don’t live too far away. And I have to say it’s beautiful to walk around, but it’s clear that it’s not in the same state that it was years ago. So, why don’t you describe what it was like when you were younger?

View out over the city of Troy, NY and across the Hudson River from the Uncle Sam Memorial in Prospect Park.
View out over the city of Troy, NY and across the Hudson River from the Uncle Sam Memorial in Prospect Park.

00:10:38 Kathy Sheehan

Yeah. In its heyday, we had the big pool, it’s a Wesley Bintz pool, which was the first prototype above-ground municipal pool. That no longer is functioning. They stopped that around the early 1990s. And yeah, the park has seen better days, but there’s a wonderful park conservancy. And so, they continue to reclaim the park and do a lot more. You’ll see a lot more benches than there were even 10 years ago and some wonderful plantings in the spring. And there’s now a Frisbee golf course up here. So, it’s being worked on, and it’s a great dedicated group of volunteers that works closely with the city.

00:11:21 Steve Silverman

Next, we drove to a spot that I had been to before, and that’s because I have a stained-glass window that came from a warehouse they ripped down about 25 years ago. It stood right opposite to where we were standing, but believe it or not, I never realized the historical significance of what was once there.

So, Kathy, we’re now down in the city and I should mention there is some heavy equipment operating near us. But why don’t you describe where we are?

Historic marker at the corner of Adams and 1st Streets in Troy, NY.  This was the location of Ebeneezer and Samuel Wilson's meat packing business.
Historic marker at the corner of Adams and 1st Streets in Troy, NY. This was the location of Ebenezer and Samuel Wilson’s meat-packing business.

00:11:46 Kathy Sheehan

Are so we are at the corner of Adams and 1st Street, and we’re about two blocks from the Hudson River, so we’re really down in the flats here in, in Troy. Actually, this is our early suburbs, but in 1793, this is where Samuel and Ebenezer had their meat factory here. They employed almost 200 people. And this is where they were taking care of that beef and pork that they were supplying to the troops in Greenbush that were the at the cantonment, down in what is now the city of Rensselaer. And so, they answered the ad by Albert Anderson. They needed to get barrels of beef and pork packed into good brine and good oak barrels, and the barrels needed to be stamped US-EA standing for United States and Albert Anderson. And so, this is where our story and the legend starts to unfold between Samuel and Ebenezer Wilson and Uncle Sam, the legend.

00:12:47 Steve Silverman

Next, he drove about 7 miles, or 11.25 kilometers South of Troy, to a housing development known as Hampton Manor.

We then parked in the parking lot of the Red Mill School there, and in fact, you’ll hear the kids playing on the playground. And then we walked along the road to view an immense wooden building that was hidden in the woods beside the school.

Unfortunately, as we stood there, it started to rain, so we had to cut this visit short.

Kathy once again we’ve changed locations. So why don’t you describe where we are?

00:13:17 Kathy Sheehan

We are now in the city of Rensselaer, and at the time, during the War of 1812, this was Bath on Hudson, and we’re very close to the Hudson River. And what we were standing in front of is the last remaining officers’ barrack for the cantonment that was here. During the War of 1812, there were 5000 troops that were stationed here at this cantonment. This became a really important spot for supplies and troop movements, for all the troops coming up from New York and New Jersey, fighting during the War of 1812, which was predominantly fought way up in northern New York on Lake Champlain, think the Battle of Plattsburgh and things like that. And so, it was pretty much a naval war. And so, this really was the staging area for that. But they did have a hospital and everything on the grounds and even a prison, all sorts of warehouses, so it covered a huge area. Many, many buildings. And as I said, this is the only one left. It is behind the Red Mill School and it’s now a private home. Actually, it’s a bunch of apartments, but it basically looks exactly the same on the exterior as it did during the War of 1812.

The last remaining building of the Greenbush Cantonment from the War of 1812. This building sits next to the Red Mill School in Hampton Manor, NY.
The last remaining building of the Greenbush Cantonment from the War of 1812. This building sits next to the Red Mill School in Hampton Manor, NY.

00:14:30 Steve Silverman

Now, Kathy, how did they get all the supplies here? I mean, you’re talking about, you know, Sam Wilson and his brother are producing the meat and other things up in Troy. And here we are down the Hudson River. Do they bring it down the river or did they bring it over land?

00:14:42 Kathy Sheehan

So, we were at the slaughterhouse on the corner of 1st and Adams Street, and there was a ferry there. And they would put all those barrels of beef in the good brine, and they would be shipping them right down the Hudson River. Again, remember, we’ve got the navigable Hudson all the way up to Troy and they would be brought here to the cantonment, right off the Hudson. If you’re familiar in this area where the train station is, you would have the docks there, and then they were brought over here to for the for the storehouses for the for the cantonment. And then they again would be, in turn, shipped back on the Hudson River, going up the river to where they needed them up in, you know, upstate New York.

00:15:25 Steve Silverman

Now this is the spot that Uncle Sam actually got his nickname. Is that correct?

00:15:29 Kathy Sheehan

This is correct. So, those barrels are stamped US-EA, and so as those barrels are being taken off the docks by the troops. And Sam Wilson’s, you know there was 200 people working in that slaughterhouse, some of them were nephews of his, as the legend goes, and they would have referred to him as Uncle Sam. And the soldiers are looking at the barrels that are marked, and they going, ‘Oh! Here comes Uncle Sam and his beef.’ So, this is kind of where we think the legend starts, because of those barrels being stamped US-EA, standing for United States and Albert Anderson, who is the other unknown figure in this whole story.

00:16:11 Steve Silverman

So, Kathy why don’t you tell us a little bit about Albert Anderson.

00:16:13 Kathy Sheehan

So, I find this fascinating, this part of this whole story, and I think it’s been kind of forgotten. Those barrels that were marked US-EA, for the United States. And Albert Anderson really is the government contractor. He is the one who is hired by the United States government to supply beef and pork to the troops. He subcontracts to get Samuel and Ebenezer Wilson. They’re the ones that answer his ad. And so, what happened was he turned around, and they get all the beef, the 15,000 pounds of beef and pork. And they present their bill to Albert Anderson and Albert Anderson pays them during the War of 1812.

So, when the war finished, Albert Anderson presents his bill to the US government saying, ‘Okay, you know, here I’ve done my part,’ and the US government says ‘Maybe, not so fast. Maybe you’ve been also supplying beef and pork to the British.’

Which maybe would not have been out of the realm of possibility, if anyone’s familiar with Northern New York. Not a whole lot going on up there and you would have been struggling to get supplies, maybe from the Canadian side or you know, or however that worked. But they never were able to prove it, but he had to keep petitioning Congress every single year for his money.

And they kept saying no, no, no, we’re still investigating. Still investigating. Albert Anderson dies a few years later and he never sees a dime of the money that he invested in hiring Sam and Ebenezer. You know, to get all this. And his wife and his son continued to petition Congress, and they finally ended up about maybe 10 or 15 years later, finally got about 25% of what was ultimately owed to him. With never any other explanation why they kept, you know, because they never could prove that he was buttering both sides of the bread, so to speak.

Photograph of Samuel Wilson.
Photograph of Samuel Wilson.

00:18:11 Steve Silverman

We were just in Hampton Manor, which lies South of Troy. Next, we head to the northern portion of Troy to the Lansingburgh section to visit the spectacular Oakwood Cemetery. And I am not exaggerating. It is an incredible cemetery to visit. As the crow flies, we’re now about 2-1/2 miles or 4 kilometers north of the Hart Cluett Museum and downtown Troy.

So, Kathy, we’ve changed location. We’re now at Oakwood Cemetery, which is in the northern part of Troy. And I should point out that it is raining out. So, we’re sitting in the car looking at a couple of tombstones. So why don’t you describe what’s going on here?

Signs all around Oakwood Cemetery point toward Uncle Sam's gravesite.
Signs all around Oakwood Cemetery point toward Uncle Sam’s gravesite.

00:18:45 Kathy Sheehan

Yes. This wonderful cemetery, the first burials were put in 1848. It’s part of the rural cemetery movement. And now we are up in the north part of Lansingburgh of Troy, and what we’re looking at is a small area of gravestones that were reinterred from the State Street Burial Ground. And two of Samuel and Betsey Mann Wilson’s children are buried in this site. And we will be heading over to where Samuel and Betsey are buried.

But these were all reinterred in 1875 when they were building City Hall. Two of his children, one died of an illness, and the other one died of getting hit, actually falling off a carriage coach down in Troy when they were living on Ferry Street.

Gravesite of Polly and Sam Wilson Jr in Oakwood Cemetery. Troy, NY
Gravestone in Troy’s Oakwood Cemetery reads: “Uncle Sam and Betsey Wilson’s Children; DAUGHTER; Polly, 1797-1805; Died from fever Age 8; SON; Sam Jr. 1800-1807; Died from a fractured skull Falling off a wagon Age 7; Uncle Sam Memorial Foundation 2011.”

00:19:32 Steve Silverman

That’s kind of sad. You know, one thing I’ve noticed about cemeteries, because I actually wrote my first book sitting in a cemetery, is how many people died young. Children in particular.

00:19:44 Kathy Sheehan

Yes, that’s true. You know, in infancy, there are even a lot of times that they sometimes didn’t name babies right away because you didn’t know if they were going to survive. And of course, this is the advent before we had antibiotics and things like that. So, there were many, many deaths of young children. And usually for, particularly for young women, when they looked if you could survive past five, usually made it. And then another time that you know young people died, particularly women, was childbirth. If you made it through the childbirth years, you usually live to be a fairly old woman.

But a lot of a lot of children also died in, in terrible accidents in the factories because you had a lot of child labor that was going on. Even in the early 19th century where the Pottery district, we kind of talked about the west side of Mount Ida. There were also a lot of potters that were along there. It is called the Pottery District now, in that neighborhood.

And one of the things that children did was to take salt and throw them into the kilns where you were glazing. They have small hands, they could do that, but you get a lot of flashback. And so, a lot of children were burned and died from those industrial accidents.

Later on, a lot of children were injured in some of the factories. They were the Marshall Mills. Used to make cloth and they would be running in between the machines to change the spools and sometimes got caught in some of those. So, there was really, it was pretty tragic. And, of course, they didn’t even change the child labor laws to, well at the end of the 19th century. Really going into the 20th century before serious child labor laws were enacted.

00:21:28 Steve Silverman

Next up, we have the grave of Samuel Wilson.

Just to set the time frame he was born on September 13, 1766, in Arlington, Massachusetts, and he died in Troy on July 31, 1854. He was 87 years of age.

Now we’re probably in the most famous, most visited spot in the cemetery and I have to say this is an incredible cemetery, but this is the spot that I believe is the most visited. So, Kathy why don’t you tell us where we are?

Gravesite of Samuel and Betsey Mann Wilson in Oakwood Cemetery, Troy, NY.
Gravesite of Samuel and Betsey Mann Wilson in Oakwood Cemetery, Troy, NY. Their grave markers sit just left of center, under the small tree. A small American flag can be seen in front. Behind their grave is the historic marker that their granddaughter Marion Wilson Sheldon had erected in 1931. Two stone benches and the US flag complete the burial site.

00:21:58 Kathy Sheehan

We are at the final resting place of Samuel and Betsey Mann Wilson. Up here in Oakwood Cemetery. Originally, he was buried in Mount Ida Cemetery off Pawling Avenue, and then was reinterred a few years later, probably when Betsey died in the 1880s.

So, it is an interesting spot. There is also another historic marker there that was placed in the 1920s by their granddaughter. And, honoring the whole, starting to under this image Uncle Sam. And we start, really, we start to think about the man and then the legend. And so now we’re even thinking about this all the way back into the 1920s with her marker that is there.

U. S.; In loving memory of "Uncle Sam"; The name originating with Samuel Wilson, 1766 - 1854, During the War of 1812 and since adopted by the United States; Erected 1931 by his granddaughter Marion Wilson (Sheldon).
U. S.; In loving memory of “Uncle Sam”; The name originating with Samuel Wilson, 1766 – 1854, During the War of 1812 and since adopted by the United States; Erected 1931 by his granddaughter Marion Wilson (Sheldon).

One of the things I think is really interesting, and I do a lot of tours of Oakland Cemetery, is people always come up here and went ‘Oh! It’s not very fancy. It’s like, wait a minute, there should be like a huge monument or something here. This is Uncle Sam.’

And well, we have to realize that Sam Wilson, when he died, he was a good businessman, he was obviously an honored father and husband. But, you know, he never knew he was going to be famous as this. So, you know, it’s a simple stone. I’m of the urge that you leave it that way. A lot of people are like, ‘No, no, you should have something bigger.’ Well, they did. His granddaughter did do one that was typical in the 20s. That’s a very nice stone. And it is bigger. And it does honor that he is attached to this symbolism of the United States. And there’s a wonderful flag here.

And every year on his birthday, there is always a memorial that’s here at the at the gravesite to talk about Samuel Wilson. His contributions not only to the city of Troy, but to the greater good that happened because of the War of 1812.

Gravestones of Betsy Mann Wilson and Samuel Wilson in Oakwood Cemetery, Troy, NY.
Gravestones of Betsy Mann Wilson and Samuel Wilson in Oakwood Cemetery, Troy, NY.

00:23:49 Steve Silverman

And our last stop for today is right back where we started at the Hart Cluett Museum on 2nd Avenue in Troy. They do have a permanent Uncle Sam Exhibit and it’s located on the lower level of the museum. And while the acoustics aren’t very good in this room, it is the perfect place to end our Uncle Sam tour.

Well, Kathy, we’re at our final stop on the tour. We’re back at the museum. We’re in the Uncle Sam exhibit, so why don’t you describe a little bit about what’s happening here?

00:24:16 Kathy Sheehan

Yeah. So, what we wanted to do here was really talk about the man and the legend. And, of course, as we know, this legend starts during this War of 1812 and those barrels stabbed US-EA, and it really started to be symbolizing. Oh, Uncle Sam starts to symbolize our country. And it’s also something that’s symbolizing everything that is good.

Now those that kind of changes over the years, depending on what political cartoonist is working on, but we start seeing images pretty early on in Harper’s Weekly, but it was somebody like Thomas Nast who really starts to create this caricature of Uncle Sam that we’re more familiar with. Kind of the stripes outfit, and the long flowing beard, and things like that, even though we think that Sam Wilson himself was actually clean shaven. But we do know that he was fairly tall. At least he is reputed to be.

1917 Uncle Sam poster as illustrated by James Montgomery Flagg.
1917 Uncle Sam poster as illustrated by James Montgomery Flagg. This image was first printed on the cover of the July 6, 1916, issue of Leslie’s Weekly with the caption “What Are You Doing for Preparedness?”

But it’s the most famous one is James Montgomery Flagg, and that is the World War One era poster of the Uncle Sam Wants You. And the United States government liked that so much that they recommissioned it in during World War II. So that’s when you really seeing a lot. During the Vietnam War, of course, you see a lot of anti-US posters and they use Uncle Sam that way.

So, in Troy though, it’s the interesting story about how Troy decides that, you know, we nationally want people to know that Samuel Wilson himself lived here, and that yes, he is the progenitor of our nation. symbol, and the story starts back in Troy. And while that has been argued as we talked about when we first started this podcast, this actually did start in the 1930s with his granddaughter, with Marion Sheldon, and then it continued on right up through 1960, there was a Veterans for Uncle Sam committee, and they actually presented a petition to the United States Senate. Thousands of people signed this petition, and it was actually finally approved by the Senate and the House in 1961, and signed by John Fitzgerald Kennedy that Samuel Wilson, that Troy is the official home of Uncle Sam, with his background of Samuel Wilson, and that he is the progenitor of our nation’s symbol.

00:26:32 Steve Silverman

Now about that poster, we’re actually standing in front of a real signed copy by Montgomery Flag himself, right?

00:26:40 Kathy Sheehan

Yes. And what’s interesting is that’s actually a kind of a self-portrait of James Montgomery Flagg. He kind of dressed himself up in the costume and looked himself in the mirror and created that image, which is now so iconic.

And yes, you can come and see that, and we have the story of Samuel Wilson, the man, we have artifacts from his home, and some of the early maps of Troy that showed us where the brick-making business and the meat packing was, and the fruit and vegetable orchards. And then of course, the petition.

So, we have both stories down here in in our in our gallery that talks about Uncle Sam, the man and the legend. And we can come and visit us. We’re open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. We’re at 57 2nd St. in historic downtown Troy, and for further information, just go to our website at hartcluett.org.

00:27:34 Steve Silverman

Well, Kathy, I just want to thank you for doing this. I actually mentioned this to you maybe four or five years ago to actually do it, and we ended up doing the Russell Sage one first, But this is the original tour I asked you to talk about. So, thanks for taking me out and showing me all the sites of Uncle Sam.

00:27:49 Kathy Sheehan

Oh, you’re very welcome. I enjoyed it. And I’ll look forward to the next one. We can figure out a new topic.

00:27:56 Steve Silverman

That sounds great. Well, let’s just say goodbye to everybody.

00:27:58 Kathy Sheehan

Take care. Bye! Bye!

00:28:05 Steve Silverman

I hope you enjoyed that Uncle Sam tour. I first approached Kathy about recording this probably about five years ago, and she did generously offer to record this with me. But then this little thing called the pandemic hit and that idea of course was placed on the back burner.

Microphone problems aside, this really was a lot of fun to do. When my wife and I first took her Uncle Sam tour years ago, we simply walked around downtown Troy. And that’s really what I expected this time, but Kathy surprised me with the locations as she took me to.

Again, I do want to thank Kathy for her generosity in putting this all together. If you live anywhere near Troy or happen to be in Saratoga or somewhere nearby on vacation, be sure to take a visit to the historic section of Troy.

And yes, the Hart Cluett Museum should be on your list, as should a walk around Washington Park, as well as along River Street and the blocks surrounding it. I assure you, there’s plenty of places to eat and shop there.

I should add that Kathy and others at the museum do walking tours around the city in the spring, the summer, and the fall. Plus, they have all kinds of events throughout the year. And if you’re interested, you can see their calendar of events at hartcluett.org. That’s hartcluett.org.

Just a reminder that the Useless Information Podcast is part of the Airwave Media Podcast network, so be sure to visit airwavemedia.com and there you’ll find a curated selection of some of the best podcasts out there.

As always, thanks for listening and take care everyone. Bye.

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