Statue of Liberty

One of the nation’s enduring symbols, the Statue of Liberty, was dedicated on Bedloe’s Island in New York Harbor on this date in 1886.

A gift from France, the statue’s full name is “Liberty Enlightening the World,” and is the work of sculptor Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi. France also was the country of origin of a bit under 12,000 of the 334,000 immigrants arriving that year.

Credit: Office of the NYC Mayor.

The statue was the first glimpse of America for more than 20 million immigrants who came through nearby Ellis Island, chiefly from Ireland, Germany, Italy and Poland.

In 1913, the year of the greatest influx, around 14.5 percent of the American population was foreign-born. Today, that figure is around 13 1/2 percent, or 43 million people.

Profile America is in its 23rd year as a public service of the U.S. Census Bureau. You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau online.

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