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Liberty Enlightening The World Essay

1167 words - 5 pages

"We will not forget that liberty here made her home; nor shall her chosen altar be neglected," stated Grover Cleveland in 1886 when he accepted a gift from France that would unite two countries, and arouse great nationalism in each.1 The Statue of Liberty stands today as a monument of freedom that makes a bold statement of the American attitude that has not wavered throughout the country’s existence. “Lady Liberty,” as many Americans call her, will forever be a loud voice in the New York Harbor exclaiming the freedoms, liberties, and friendships that bond the United States together as one.
Frederic Bartholdi, a French sculptor, was commissioned to construct the Statue of Liberty in 1874 as ...view middle of the document...

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Resting in the shadow of the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island became a safe haven for over seventeen million immigrants during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This was a place with sanitary restrictions and promised jobs through its enlarging industrial endeavors.7 The location of the Statue of Liberty has transformed her symbolism from “Liberty Enlightening the World” to the “Mother of Exiles.”8 In 1903, a small plaque was placed at the base of the statue that had a portion of a Jewish-American author’s poem engraved on it.9 “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,” exclaimed Emma Lazarus.10 This portion of literature gave the Statue of Liberty a voice – something to say as she stood there boldly in the harbor, welcoming thousands upon thousands of immigrants seeking the American Dream in a country famous for its beliefs of freedom, individualism, and liberty. Lady Liberty welcomed the poor – she gave hope that they may be rich. She yearned for the tired to come to America – she symbolized the opportunity to establish an occupation that after years of labor, one could rest soundly. The Mother of Exiles gave a rejuvenating life to huddled masses with the picture of her standing straight and tall, so could the immigrants stand with a optimistic outlook on freedom and new life. Liberty took on a new meaning as well. Now, in the early twentieth century, liberty meant accepting another culture. The American race is not one of purity, but of a combination of heritages that emerged together to create a unique ethnicity – one that no one can ever imitate. America is a melting pot of cultures, and that is why the Statue of Liberty stands and screams out her opinions on multiculturalism so loudly today.
The Statue of Liberty is a symbol of freedom throughout the United States. Contrary to how it is seen today, it was originally saw as a sign of the friendship between the U.S. and France. Along with this friendship the statue was also a sign of hope from France. It symbolized the hope that France could overthrow their rulers just as the United States had and was a pushing factor of the French Revolution.11 France crafted the Statue of Liberty with several parts of the statue having a significant meaning devoted to them. The torch is very iconic and shows the idea...

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