Statue of Liberty - History and Facts | History Hit

Statue of Liberty

New York City, Liberty Island, United States

The Statue of Liberty is a 19th century Romanesque monument in New York that has since become a worldwide symbol of freedom.

Lily Johnson

14 Jul 2021
Image Credit: TZIDO SUN/

About Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty, short for ‘Statue of Liberty Enlightening the World’, is an iconic copper and steel statue at the entrance of New York Harbour. An enduring symbol of freedom and independence, ‘Lady Liberty’ is one of the most well-known landmarks on earth.

Statue of Liberty history

The Statue of Liberty was gifted to the United States of America by the French in 1886, as a symbol of friendship and in celebration of the centennial of the signing of the US Declaration of Independence.

It is a Greco-Roman style depiction of Libertas, the Roman goddess of liberty, who holds up a lit torch in one hand and a tablet depicting the date the Declaration of Independence was signed in Roman numerals. At her feet, a shackle and chains lie broken, commemorating the then-recent abolition of slavery.

She was designed by French artist Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi and engineered by Alexandre Gustave Eiffel, while her pedestal was created by the Americans.

The Statue of Liberty’s total height from ground to torch is a staggering 92.99 metres. Originally built in France in 1884, it arrived in New York in June 1885 and was dedicated on 28 October 1886.

Statue of Liberty today

Situated on Liberty Island, there are numerous exhibits and tours available both inside and outside the Statue of Liberty. Upon reaching Liberty Island, visitors can go to the information station to watch a short film about the statue’s history, and check the schedule of events for the 45 minute long ranger tours, which start at the Liberty Island Flagpole.

Only those who have a Monument Access Reservation stamped on their ferry ticket can enter the Statue of Liberty’s pedestal and museum to view the main exhibits including a host of photographs and artefacts.

Visitors may also see the statue’s original torch on the second floor balcony, and enjoy great views over New York City. The statue’s interior and her crown are closed indefinitely however.

This site also features as one of our Top 10 Tourist Attractions in the United States.

Getting to the Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty is located on Liberty Island in New York, and can be reached via the Statue Cruises ferry service from New York City or New Jersey. Boarding from New York takes place at the Battery’s ferry terminal, while those in New Jersey can board at Liberty State Park.

Featured In

US Historic Sites

Discover some of the best historic sites in the United States, from iconic sites like the White House, Statue of Liberty, and Mount Rushmore, to the more hidden historical gems like Historic Jamestowne, Taos Pueblo, and the Freedom Trail in Boston.