Anniversary of the Dedication of the Statue of Liberty

October 28, 2016

Almost everyone knows what the Statue of Liberty is, you know, it's that green statue that sits in New York Harbor.  Where did she come from?  She hasn't always been there you know.  

Well, the Statue of Liberty was gifted to the United States by France in 1886.  The building of the statue was a joint effort between the United States and France, the USA would build the pedestal that the statue stood on, and France would build the statue itself.  The project started in 1877 and was shipped to America from France by 1885, the copper statue came in pieces in over 200 packages!  The statue was originally called "Liberty Enlightening the World," and was a symbol of the friendship between France and America that was made during the Revolutionary War. 

It was dedicated in 1886 by then president Grover Cleveland.  The Statue of Liberty stood at 151 feet and was a beautiful copper color (strange to think because we think of her as green nowadays).  People swarmed to New York City to see the statue and celebrate, in fact most all hotels were filled.  A barge went back and forth across the harbor so people could see the president and the dedication ceremony.  At the ceremony,President Cleveland formally dedicated the statue, saying, “We will not forget that Liberty has here made her home; nor shall her chosen altar be neglected.”

Those words still ring true. 

  • Here are some fun facts about the Statue of Liberty:

  • The female form represented by the sculpture is based on Libertas, the Roman goddess of liberty. She holds a torch and a tablet that has the date of the American Declaration of Independence inscribed in it (July 4, 1776).

  • A broken chain also lies at the feet of the statue which is hard to see from the ground.

  • The Statue of Liberty was originally copper colored, but turned green over the years due to weather

  • Lady Liberty wears a size 879 shoe

  • Here's what's inscribed on the pedestal:

“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me.
I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

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