Uncle Sam tobacco jar produced in Japan circa 1960. Uncle Sam is the jocular name and personage given to the government of the United States. Uncle Sam is often depicted as a tall, thin man having a white beard and wearing a blue tailcoat, red-and-white-striped trousers, and a tall hat with a band of stars. Over the years he has become recognized worldwide as the United States' national symbol. Uncle Sam has also developed notoriety for his appearance in military propaganda, popularized by a famous 1917 World War I recruiting poster by J.M. Flagg in while he says "I WANT YOU".