Saturday, January 19, 2013

Reverence For All Blood Relatives & Uncle Sam at Arlington

©A.K.SIMON - Reverance for All Blood Relatives - 8"x8" oil on linen $100

©A.K.SIMON - Uncle Sam at Arlington - 8"x8" oil on linen - $100

I'm adding this painting to the blog because I wasn't thrilled with the first. i do like this one better.

"Thirty Days Hath September”  – 30-day Painting Challenge, Day 7 for me (actually 10 images but only 7 now in my theme - I think this one will be a re-do)  - follow the challenge at lesliesaeta.blogspot  - 

Historical Event: September 7, 1813: "Uncle Sam" was 1st used to refer to United States - the image followed later.

MY TAKE: Not sure why my mind went to Arlington when reading about Uncle Sam because it could have gone to baseball and apple pie. But having been to Arlington and feeling the sorrow that I'm sure everyone collectively feels in a place of reverence such as this, I thought it would be a powerful image to show "Uncle Sam" as representative of ALL. (Head bowed in a reverent moment of silence). But then again there is that image of Flagg's Uncle Sam pointing right at you and asking for your support - images can be so powerful can't they - maybe that's why my mind went the Arlington route!

HISTORY: In the late 1860s and 1870s, political cartoonist Thomas Nast (1840-1902) began popularizing the image of Uncle Sam. Nast continued to evolve the image, eventually giving Sam the white beard and stars-and-stripes suit that are associated with the character today. The German-born Nast was also credited with creating the modern image of Santa Claus as well as coming up with the donkey as a symbol for the Democratic Party and the elephant as a symbol for the Republicans. Nast also famously lampooned the corruption of New York City's Tammany Hall in his editorial cartoons and was, in part, responsible for the downfall of Tammany leader William Tweed.
Perhaps the most famous image of Uncle Sam was created by artist James Montgomery Flagg (1877-1960). In Flagg's version, Uncle Sam wears a tall top hat and blue jacket and is pointing straight ahead at the viewer. During World War I, this portrait of Sam with the words "I Want You For The U.S. Army" was used as a recruiting poster. The image, which became immensely popular, was first used on the cover of Leslie's Weekly in July 1916 with the title "What Are You Doing for Preparedness?" The poster was widely distributed and has subsequently been re-used numerous times with different captions.
In September 1961, the U.S. Congress recognized Samuel Wilson as "the progenitor of America's national symbol of Uncle Sam." Wilson died at age 88 in 1854, and was buried next to his wife Betsey Mann in the Oakwood Cemetery in Troy, New York, the town that calls itself "The Home of Uncle Sam."


  1. Great painting. Arlington, MA also calls itself the home of Uncle Sam and has a big statue in the center of town. Although the great sculptor Cyrus Dallin spent a long part of his life living in Arlington, MA.

    1. Thanks Susan, I did not know that. I also had not heard of Cyrus Dallin so I looked up his work. His work is emotional and beautifully rendered, I'm surprised I had not seen it before. Thanks for leaving the comment.


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