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The Statue of Liberty Reopens

The Statue of Liberty has stood on an island at the entrance to New York Harbor since 1886. The statue's full name is “Liberty Enlightening the World.” It was a gift to the people of the United States from the people of France. It is a symbol of freedom and of the friendship between the two countries.

The Building of the Statue

A French sculptor named Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi designed the statue. The outside is made out of copper. Copper is the same metal found on the outside of a penny. Over time, the statue has turned light green.

Lady Liberty, as the statue is sometimes called, is a little over 150 feet tall. It stands on a base that is about 154 feet tall. Money to build the base came from Americans across the country, including school children who collected and sent in pennies. The base sits in the middle of a star-shaped military fort built in the early 1800s.

Lady Liberty's Visitors

Millions of tourists have visited the Statue of Liberty. Stairs wind along the inside of the statue so that people can go up to the crown. From up there, visitors can see for miles across New York Harbor. After September 11, 2001, the Statue of Liberty was closed to visitors so that people could make repairs and be sure the statue was safe.

Lady Liberty reopened to the public on August 3, 2004. New tours and educational programs tell the history of the statue. For safety, people can no longer go up to Lady Liberty's crown. A new glass viewing area opened in the monument's base where tourists can look up into the statue. Visitors must have reservations, and guards check people before letting them inside the monument.

By day, the sun lights up the flame of the statue's torch. And by night, the flame holds 16 lamps that shine brightly, sending a warm glow over the harbor. Lady Liberty ever reminds people that freedom can light up the world.