Statue of Liberty

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Related to Statue of Liberty: Ellis Island, Empire State Building

Liberty, Statue of,

statue on Liberty Island in Upper New York Bay, commanding the entrance to New York City. Liberty Island, c.10 acres (4 hectares), formerly Bedloe's Island (renamed in 1956), was the former site of a quarantine station and harbor fortifications. The statue, originally known as Liberty Enlightening the World, was proposed by the French historian Édouard Laboulaye in 1865 to commemorate the alliance of France with the American colonies during the American Revolution and, according to scholars, was originally intended as an antimonarchy and antislavery symbol. Funds were raised by the Franco-American Union (est. 1875), and the statue was designed by the French sculptor F. A. BartholdiBartholdi, Frédéric Auguste
, 1834–1904, French sculptor, b. Colmar, Alsace. He studied painting under Ary Scheffer but turned to sculpture. Among his many works is a colossal group, Switzerland Succoring Strasbourg,
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 in the form of a woman with an uplifted arm holding a torch. The world's tallest metal statue when it was made, 151 ft (46 m) in height, it was constructed of copper sheets, using Bartholdi's 9-ft (2.7-m) model. It was shipped to New York City in 1885, assembled, and dedicated in 1886.

The base of the statue is an 11-pointed star, part of old Fort Wood; a 154-ft (47-m) pedestal, built through American funding, is made of concrete faced with granite. On it is a tablet, affixed in 1903, inscribed with "The New Colossus," the famous sonnet of Emma Lazarus, welcoming immigrants to the United States. By the early 20th cent, this greeting to the arriving stranger had become the statue's primary symbolic message. Broadening in its meaning, the statue became a symbol of America during World War I and a ubiquitous democratic symbol during World War II. An elevator runs to the top of the pedestal, and steps within the statue lead to the crown. The statue was extensively refurbished prior to its centennial celebration in 1986. The Statue of Liberty became a national monument in 1924. In 1965, Ellis IslandEllis Island,
island, c.27 acres (10.9 hectares), in Upper New York Bay, SW of Manhattan island. Government-controlled since 1808, it was long the site of an arsenal and a fort, but most famously served (1892–1954) as the chief immigration station of the United States.
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, the entrance point of millions of immigrants to the United States, was added to the monument.


See M. Trachtenberg, The Statue of Liberty (1976); W. S. Dillon, ed., The Statue of Liberty Revisited (1994); B. Moreno, The Statue of Liberty Encyclopedia (2000); Y. S. Khan, Enlightening the World: The Creation of the Statue of Liberty (2010); E. Mitchell, Liberty's Torch: The Great Adventure to Build the Statue of Liberty (2014).

Statue of Liberty

great symbolic structure in New York harbor. [Am. Hist.: Jameson, 284]
See: America

Statue of Liberty

perhaps the most famous monument to independence. [Am. Hist.: Jameson, 284]
See: Freedom
References in periodicals archive ?
We must stand up to President Trump's hateful policies during this government shutdown and I am proud that here in New York we will do our part to ensure that our voices are heard and the Statue of Liberty remains open.
The Statue of Liberty is not just one of the most recognized monuments in the world, but an international symbol of hope that deserves to have her story shared with everyone who visits Liberty Island," said Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation President and CEO Stephen Briganti.
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The Statue of Liberty is a true American icon that will be forever a part of our national landscape," said Quintin Frey, President of Turkey Hill Dairy.
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