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Statue of Liberty - Essay Example

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The Statue f Liberty is probably the best known and greatest symbol f American freedom. It stands 151 feet tall on Liberty Island in New York Harbor. When the French sculptor Fredric Bartholdi visited America in 1871, he was so impressed with this country that he vowed "to make a statue that can be seen all the way from America to France."
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Statue of Liberty
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Download file to see previous pages The statue entitled "Liberty Enlightens the World" was shipped to America in 214 separate crates in 1886 and re-assembled on tiny Bedloe Island, which was soon renamed Liberty Island. (Schamel 299-302)
For more than a century, the Statue f Liberty has stood as a symbol f the American ideals f freedom, equality, and opportunity, and has greeted millions f immigrants at the entrance to New York Harbor. Given by the people f France to the people f the United States to commemorate the friendship between the two countries during the American Revolution, the 151-foot-tall statue was shipped in pieces from France and assembled and dedicated in 1876.
Over the years, world events have added new layers f meaning to the statue as a symbol. During two World Wars, it endured as a reminder f the sacrifices involved in maintaining freedom, and in 1989, Chinese students constructed a plaster "Goddess f Democracy" inspired by the Statue f Liberty during political protests in Beijing's Tiananmen Square. (Bender 60-62)
The idea for a monument to commemorate the achievement f America's independence originated with the French scholar and abolitionist, Edouard de Laboulaye, in 1865. French intellectuals admired America's democratic ideals and its recent defeat f slavery, and aspired to create a French republican government modeled on the American constitution to replace the empire f Napoleon III. De Laboulaye suggested to F.A. Bartholdi, a 31-year old sculptor, that he travel to America to explore the possibility f a monument to French-American friendship. Bartholdi's vision for the Statue f Liberty solidified when he first saw New York Harbor.
The tallest structure in the New York metropolitan area when it was dedicated, the Statue f Liberty rests on a granite and concrete pedestal to rise to a total height f over 300 feet. The statue's uplifted right arm raises a torch which is lit at night, and her left hand holds a tablet bearing the date "July 4, 1776." A broken shackle lies in front f her right foot as she strides forward, although it is difficult for visitors to see from the ground.
A plaque with the words f a sonnet by Emma Lazarus titled "The New Colossus" was added to an interior wall f the pedestal in 1903. Lazarus had written the poem in 1883 to assist in fundraising for the pedestal, and her words, "...Give me your tired, your poor,/Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free/The wretched refuse f your teeming shore./Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,/I lift my lamp beside the golden door!" have become inextricably linked with the Statue f Liberty.
Body- Case study presentation and analysis
Design and Construction
The statue is constructed f copper sheets hand-hammered onto wooden molds, but over the years the originally shiny copper has acquired a light-green hue. The engineer Gustave Eiffel, who later built the Eiffel Tower, designed the iron framework supporting the statue. Each section f the framework, and the copper sheets covering it, is attached separately to the central tower, enabling the sheets to move independently in varying weather and temperatures. (Hansen 34-35)
Funds to build and transport the statue to the United States were raised entirely by the French people, not by the French government. An organization, the Franco-American Union, was formed in 1875 to raise money and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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