The Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty, a national monument proclaimed in 1924. Located in New York City, the monument is located on Liberty Island. The Statue of Liberty is a monumental sculpture that symbolizes freedom throughout the world. Its formal name is Liberty  Enlightening the World. The statue depicts a woman escaping the chains of tyranny, which lie at her feet. Her right hand holds aloft a torch that represents liberty. Her left hand holds a tablet inscribed with the date "July 4, 1776" (in Roman numerals), the day the United States declared its independence from England. She is wearing flowing robes and the seven rays of her spiked crown symbolize the seven seas and continents. 

The Statue of Liberty is 151 feet high. Its base and pedestal increase the height of the monument to 305 feet. The surface of the statue is composed of hammered copper sheets (about 0.01 in) thick that are riveted to an iron framework. The iron frame was devised by French engineer Gustave Andre Eiffel, who also built the Eiffel Tower in Paris. The statue rests upon a concrete and granite pedestal designed by American architect Richard Morris Hunt. A star shaped wall surrounds the 154 ft. pedestal. The wall was part of Fort Wood, which was built in the early 19th century to defend New York during the war of 1812 (1812-1815). 

The Statue of Liberty commemorates the alliance between France and the United States during the American Revolution (1775-1783). It was designed by French sculptor Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi and completed in July 1884. The French people donated the money for the statue. The United States built the pedestal with funds raised by newspaper publisher Joseph Pulitzer. The statue was first exhibited in Paris, then dismantled and shipped to New York, and reassembled at its present location. It was formally dedicated by U.S. President Grover Cleveland on  October 28, 1886. The Statue of Liberty soon became an international symbol of freedom. It greeted thousands of immigrants and visitors as they entered New York Bay and arrived in the United States. In 1903 the sonnet "The New Colossus" by American poet Emma Lazerus was inscribed in bronze at the base  of the statue. It reads: 

Not like the brazen giant of Green fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land:
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates, shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name 
Mother of Exiles.
From her beacon-hand glows world-wide welcome;
her mild eyes command
The air bridged harbor that twin cities frame
"Keep, ancient lands, your stored pomp!"
cries she
With silent lips. "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!"

To prepare for the statue's centennial in 1986, a French-American rehabilitation project repaired and cleaned the statue, replacing its glass and metal torch with one covered in gold leaf. 

Ferries from Battery Park in New York City take visitors to Liberty Island. Visitors ride an elevator or climb 192 steps to an observation area at the top of the pedestal. A museum inside the pedestal details the history of the monument and features the original torch and flame. The full climb of 354 steps (the equivalent of a 22 story building) takes the most ambivious visitors from the pedestal to the crown, which offers outstanding views of New York Harbor and New York City.