Hiram Ulysses Grant was born on this date in 1822.
In 1839, his Ohio congressman nominated him for the U.S. Military Academy, but mistakenly as Ulysses S. Grant. The cadet simply adopted the name. Because his new initials were U.S., the same as those of Uncle Sam, Grant was nicknamed Sam in the Army.
The name U.S. Grant took on a whole new meaning in 1862 however.
HEADQUARTERS ARMY IN THE FIELD
Camp near Fort Donelson
February 16, 1862.
General S. B. BUCKNER,
SIR: Yours of this date, proposing armistice and appointment of commissioners to settle terms of capitulation, is just received. No terms except unconditional and immediate surrender can be accepted. I propose to move immediately upon your works.
I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
From then the U.S. in U.S. Grant stood for Unconditional Surrender.