Made in Paris by the French sculptor Bartholdi, in collaboration with Gustave Eiffel (who was responsible for the steel framework), this towering monument to liberty was a gift from France on the centenary of American independence in 1886. Standing at the entrance to New York Harbour, it has welcomed millions of immigrants to the United States ever since. Its design and construction were recognized at the time as one of the greatest technical achievements of the 19th century, and, when finally dedicated a decade later, it was hailed as a bridge between art and engineering. This colossal statue is a masterpiece of the human spirit. She endures as a highly potent symbol of ideals such as liberty, peace, human rights, abolition of slavery, democracy and opportunity.
In this photo released by Agence Papyrus the structure of the hand of the Statue of Liberty, designed by French sculptor Frederic Auguste Bartholdi, is seen inside a Paris studio around 1875. (AP Photo/Agence Papyrus)
Workmen constructing the Statue of Liberty in Bartholdi's Parisian warehouse workshop; first model; left hand; and quarter-size head--Winter 1882. Photo from the Library of Congress.
In this photo released by Agence Papyrus the Statue of Liberty designed by French sculptor Frederic Auguste Bartholdi towers over Paris rooftops in 1884. (AP Photo/Agence Papyrus)
The Statue of Liberty with the scaffolding erected by the Works Progress Administration to furnish a footing for the coppersmiths who are about to put a flashing or apron around the bottom of the statue to keep out the storm water which for years has been seeping down through the masonry of the pedestal in New York City, 1930. (AP Photo)
President Franklin Roosevelt, speaks on the 50th anniversary of the erection of the State of Liberty in New York, on Oct. 28, 1936. He declared that, "To the message of Liberty which America sends to all the world must be added her message of peace." (AP Photo/Preston Stroup)
Celebrations for the 55th anniversary of the Statue of Liberty are seen, Oct. 28, 1941. A garrison flag, 20 by 38 feet, presented by the Veterans of Foreign Wars, is draped over the base of the statue. (AP Photo)
Queen Elizabeth turns and smiles while Prince Philip points and shouts something as the royal couple pass the famed Statue of Liberty on the Army ferryboat carrying them from Staten Island to Manhattan for their one-day visit to New York City, on Oct. 21, 1957. (AP Photo)
Mrs. Nancy Reagan is joined by Kristeen Reft, 9, of Kodiak Island, Alaska, left, and Laurence Honore of Herdville, France, center, as all three wave from the crown of the Statue of Liberty during reopening ceremonies on Saturday, July 5, 1986 in New York. The Statue was closed do the public for a year for renovation. (AP Photo/Susan Ragan)