Monday, November 20, 2017 | ePaper

Lady liberty : 125 years as Icon of freedom

  • Print


Louise Fenner :
 "Over the years, the meanings of the [Statue of Liberty] have grown until she has become an international icon of freedom and liberty, the most recognizable symbol of democracy in the world," says the National Park Service, which has responsibility for both the statue and Ellis Island.
America will mark the 125th anniversary of the dedication of the Statue of Liberty on October 28 with a huge birthday party. The statue will be honored with a flotilla of ships in New York Harbor, musical performances, speeches, a cake and a massive fireworks display. There will also be a naturalization ceremony welcoming 125 people as U.S. citizens.
The 93-meter-high copper beauty was a gift from the people of France in 1886, in recognition of the friendship established during the American Revolution. Completed in France in 1884, the statue was disassembled, shipped to New York, and reassembled. On October 28, 1886, it was dedicated in front of thousands of cheering spectators.
The idea of the statue originated around 1865 with Édouard de Laboulaye, a French law professor, politician and writer who wanted to foster the bond between the United States and France with a monument dedicated to their shared ideals of freedom and independence.
Artist Frédéric-Auguste Bartholdi, who was known for large-scale work, was commissioned to design the sculpture. Bartholdi traveled to the United States to look for a location for the monument and decided on a small island in New York Harbor called Bedloe's Island (renamed Liberty Island in 1956).
Since the statue was a joint effort between America and France, it was agreed that the American people would build the pedestal while the French people would be responsible for the statue and assembly. In France, funds came in from city governments, sales of miniature statues, a lottery, and contributions from French schoolchildren and others. Some 2 million francs were raised (about $400,000 in U.S. dollars of the time). But fundraising was more difficult in the United States. Publisher Joseph Pulitzer stepped in and started a drive for donations using his newspaper the New York World. He printed the names of every donor, including schoolchildren who donated pennies. The fund drive drew more than 120,000 contributions, most of them less than a dollar; thus Americans were able to contribute about $250,000 for the statue's pedestal.
Bartholdi fashioned the statue - whose full name is "Liberty Enlightening the World" - from copper hammered out until it was just 2.4 millimeters thick. French engineer Alexandre-Gustave Eiffel (designer of the Eiffel Tower) built a skeleton for the statue, designed so that the statue's copper skin moves independently yet can stand upright. This flexibility allows the statue to sway in the harbor winds.

More News For this Category

Insurance in Bangladesh - its Growth, Problems & Solution

Insurance in Bangladesh - its Growth, Problems & Solution

Mir Nazim Uddin Ahmed :Insurance is not a new business in Bangladesh. Almost a century back, during British rule in India, some insurance companies started transacting business, both life

From SDG Pioneer to SDG Achiever

From SDG Pioneer to SDG Achiever

Farzana Chowdhury ACII (UK) :Sustainability Development Goals, also known as SDG are then glimpse of hope mostly for developing nations like ours. While the global disparity exists and many

Villages can potentially gain Banking business

Villages can potentially gain Banking business

The Chairman and CEO of Lockpur Group of Industries and the Chairman of SBAC Bank Limited, S M Amzad Hossain is among the most socially responsible industry owners in

From SDG Pioneer

the Parliament, Dr. Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury MP and Special guest Mr. Zunaid Ahmed Palak MP, Honorable State Minister, ICT Division, Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh. One of

Islami Bank introduces 'mohor' account

Islami Bank introduces 'mohor' account

Business Desk :Mohor obligatory bridal money given by the husband to his wife at the time of marriage. It is the basic right of women as per Islamic Shariah.

Hazrat Husain (Ra)'s martyrdom

The Day of Ashura marks the death anniversary of Hazrat Imam Husain ibn Ali (Ra), a 7th century revolutionary leader who was killed in The Battle of Karbala. The

Imam Husain (Ra): Symbol of justice and truth

Imam Husain (Ra): Symbol of justice and truth

Abdullah Akber : The Muslims all over the world observe the Day 10 of the Arabic month of Muharram in memory of Imam Husain (Ra) and his 71 companions, who

Muharram

Kazi Nazrul Islam :The sky o'erhead is blue and dark. The world, is red with blood. "Done is thy darling, mother, by the murderous hand."Waileth a womanly voice on

Imam Husain (Ra)`s sacrifice for social justice

Imam Husain (Ra)`s sacrifice for social justice

Mahdi Mahmud :What did really happen in the desert of Karbala in the tenth of Muharram that resulted into killing of Hazrat Imam Husain (Ra), the beloved grandson of

Message of His Excellency the Ambassador

Message of His Excellency the Ambassador

Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim : (In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.)All praise is due to Allah and blessings and peace be upon the Prophet Muhammad, his