Admirers visit the grave of Uncle Sam.

Uncle Sam's Grave

Field review by the editors.

Troy, New York

A lot of people think that Samuel Wilson of Troy, New York, was Uncle Sam. Samuel, however, seemed unaware of it. His simple tombstone in Oakwood Cemetery merely lists his name, age, and death date.

Seventy-seven long years passed while Samuel rested in sleepy obscurity. Then his granddaughter erected a much larger stone and brass plaque on the spot, declaring that Samuel had in fact been Uncle Sam. A flagpole went up nearby, its stars and stripes dutifully raised and lowered by local Boy Scouts. Directional signs appeared, both inside and outside the cemetery, guiding people to the grave. There are so many signs, in fact, that visitors might expect to find something big and fancy like the tomb of Colonel Sanders, rather than Sam's easy-to-miss rock and plaque. The county historian told us that there'd once been talk of putting a big statue or monument on the grave, but it ended when an Uncle Sam statue was erected downtown as a photo op.

Samuel Wilson grave marker.

Visiting the grave of Uncle Sam would seem to be an activity only appealing to belatedly gloating communists or terrorists. But in fact a steady stream of visitors stop by, and the grave's decorations of small flags and plastic flowers are well-tended. Like many celebrities, Uncle Sam appears to have more fans now than he did while he was alive.

Also see: Uncle Sam Statues

Uncle Sam's Grave

Oakwood Cemetery

Oakwood Ave., Troy, NY
In Oakwood Cemetery, just north of the city. Enter at the southern gate off of Hwy 40/Oakwood Ave. Drive past the big entrance house and keep an eye out for the small "Uncle Sam Grave" directional signs. It's a big cemetery with winding roads, and you'll probably get lost, but you should eventually find it. There's a flagpole next to the tombstone. Grave coordinates: 42.762481,-73.668111
Gates open daily 7am - 7:30pm Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

Uncle Sam Brewery MuralUncle Sam Brewery Mural, Troy, NY - 1 mi.
Aluminum Statue of Uncle SamAluminum Statue of Uncle Sam, Troy, NY - 2 mi.
Hometown of Uncle SamHometown of Uncle Sam, Troy, NY - 2 mi.
In the region:
Car on a Smokestack, Amsterdam, NY - 31 mi.

More Quirky Attractions in New York

Stories, reports and tips on tourist attractions and odd sights in New York.

Explore Thousands of Unique Roadside Landmarks!

Strange and amusing destinations in the US and Canada are our specialty. Start here.
Use's Attraction Maps to plan your next road trip.

September 30, 2020

My Sights

My Sights

Create Your Own Bizarre Road Trips!

Try My Sights

Roadside America app
Roadside Presidents app

New York Latest Tips and Stories

Latest Visitor Tips

Sight of the Week

Sight of the Week

Billy the Kid (Sep 28-Oct 4, 2020)

SotW Archive

USA and Canada Tips and Stories

More Sightings

Sightings. Arrives without warning. Leaves no burn marks. A free newsletter from Subscribe now! Hotel & Motel Finder

Special rates for hotels.

Book Now


Favorite Quirky City Sights