5 Things You Didn’t Know About Famous Statues

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRAVEL TRIVIA)

 

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Famous Statues

You know the statues, but do you know much about them? Usually, we just take a statue for face value – as a piece of art. That’s just as true for the famous statues on this list. Let’s jump right into it. Here are five things (and more) that you didn’t know about famous statues.

The Lincoln Memorial

The Lincoln Memorial

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The statue honoring President Abraham Lincoln at the Lincoln Memorial was unveiled in 1922, when the memorial was completed. The building itself was constructed from 1914 to 1922. The statue, made by Daniel Chester French, weighs 170 tons and is composed of 28 blocks of white Georgia marble. Urban legend has it that the artist sculpted Lincoln’s hands to form the “A” and “L” in American Sign Language, a nod to his legislation creating a university for the deaf.

Venus de Milo

Venus de Milo

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The famed Venus de Milo ancient Greek statue, housed at the Louvre in Paris, is also made of marble, but crafted sometime between 130 and 100 BCE. It is believed to depict Aphrodite and named after the Greek island of Milos, where it was found. The statue’s arms are missing, for unknown reasons. The mystery shrouding the statue is part of its fame and charm, symbolizing all of ancient Greece.

The Little Mermaid

The Little Mermaid

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The Little Mermaid is a fascinating icon of Copenhagen, Denmark, unveiled in 1913 and a major attraction there ever since. What might be most striking is the statue’s history with vandalism. It’s been damaged many times and is often in need of restoration. In 1964, the head was sawed off and stolen by political activists. It was never recovered and a new one was made to replace it. In 1984, the arm was cut off but returned two days after it was stolen. There was a failed attempt in 1990 to cut off the head, leaving a gash in the statue. Continuing the awful history: another decapitation in 1998 (the head, this time, was returned anonymously). It was also knocked off its base in 2003 by explosives. Paint and other vandalism have occurred numerous times over the years. Rough history.

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Christ the Redeemer

Christ the Redeemer

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Located on Corcovado, a mountain in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the world-famous Christ the Redeemer statue overlooks the city. It was created by French sculptor Paul Landowski and built by Brazilian engineer Heitor da Silva Costa and French engineer Albert Caquot. It weighs 635 metric tons and is a symbol of Christianity throughout the world. So impressive, that you may not know it was listed as one of the New 7 Wonders of the World, along with Chichen Itza, the Great Wall of China, Machu Picchu, Petra, the Taj Mahal, and Colosseum.

Statue of Liberty

Statue of Liberty

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Quite arguably the most famous statue in the world, it was a gift from France given to the United States in 1886 that still welcomes travelers into New York Harbor, holding a torch and tablet with July 4, 1776 inscribed on it – the date of the country’s independence. The seven spikes on the Statue of Liberty’s crown represent the seven continents of the world, indicating the universal concept of liberty. Formerly placed on New York’s Bedloe Island, it’s now called Liberty Island. But the main thing you didn’t know about the Statue of Liberty is her full name: Liberty Enlightening the World (or, in French, La Liberte eclairant le monde).

The history behind the Statue of Liberty

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRIVIA GENIUS)

 

The history behind the Statue of Liberty

Even if you’ve never had the opportunity to visit New York City, you know that one of its most popular tourist attractions is the Statue of Liberty. Also known as Lady Liberty, this statue has been a welcome sight in New York’s harbor for over a century. But what about the backstory behind this beautiful statue? The Statue of Liberty may be full of symbolism, but she also has a rich history that most people don’t know.

The statue was a joint effort

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Most people think that the Statue of Liberty was a gift from the French to the United States, but the story runs deeper than this. Yes, the statue was a gift to commemorate a strong alliance between France and the U.S., but both countries agreed to financially contribute to the overall build. While France focused on fundraising and crafting the actual statue, America committed to building the base and covering those costs.

Funding issues stalled progress on the statue

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To say that building the Statue of Liberty was a monumental effort is a bit of an understatement. The French historian Edouard de Laboulaye initially pitched the idea for the statue in 1865 with a goal of completion for the centennial of the Declaration of Independence in 1876. But raising funds was so difficult that actual production on the statue didn’t begin until 1875. Finances weren’t just an issue for the French. The U.S. delegation also struggled to raise money to build the pedestal.

It took a decade to create the statue

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In 1875, Frederic Auguste Bartholdi began working on the statue. He was known for creating large-scale sculptures and was awarded the commission. While he knew how to create the statue’s exterior, he worked with Alexandre-Gustave Eiffel (who created the Eiffel Tower) and Eugène-Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc to create a sturdy steel framework to attach the copper sheets. Bartholdi completed production on the statue in 1884.

Creating the pedestal

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While the French were hard at work on the statue, the Americans focused on finding a location, funding, designing, and building the pedestal where the statue would sit. To raise funds, several inventive methods were used including contests, fundraisers and exhibitions. One such contest involved the iconic sonnet that is inscribed on a plaque at the base of the statue. “The New Colossus” was written by Emma Lazarus in 1883, who won one of the contests. Her sonnet includes these memorable lines: “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-tossed to me/I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” However, this plaque wouldn’t be added to the pedestal until 1903.

As completion of the statue neared, Joseph Pulitzer, owner of The World newspaper, used his paper to secure final funding. He leveraged his opinion column to shame wealthy readers into donating toward the pedestal—and it worked. Meanwhile, the American architect Richard Morris Hunt was tapped as the winning designer for the pedestal. He created a granite pedestal in 1884 and donated his production fee toward funding the statue. The U.S. delegation selected Fort Wood on Bedloe’s Island as the statue’s home in Upper New York Bay. Final funding for the pedestal ended in August 1885, and in April 1886, the pedestal was completely built.

Reassembly and dedication

Credit: Albert Fernique [Public domain]

How do you transport a statue that is 151 feet (46 meters)? You don’t just strap it to a barge and hope for the best. After Bartholdi finished production on the Statue of Liberty, it had to be disassembled and packed in over 200 crates to ship to the U.S. for reassembly. The statue didn’t arrive in New York until June 1885. Once on Bedloe’s Island, it took four months to completely reassemble it. On October 28, 1886, President Grover Cleveland oversaw the dedication for the Statue of Liberty in front of a large crowd of well-wishers.

Name changes and jurisdiction

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Most people don’t know what Bedloe’s Island or Fort Wood is, let alone where they are located. But present-day Liberty Island underwent name and designation changes before it became what we know it as today. The island and the statue were initially maintained by the United States Lighthouse Board because the statue’s torch was used as a beacon by sailors. In 1901, the War Department took control of the lands even when Fort Wood was designated a National Monument on October 15, 1924.

In 1933, the grounds officially fell under the control of the National Park Service. On September 7, 1937, the National Monument grounds were expanded to include all of Bedloe’s Park, and the island was officially renamed to Liberty Island. In 1965, after Ellis Island was shuttered as an immigration point, it became part of the National Park Service and the Statue of Liberty National Monument.

3 Strange Facts About U.S. Monuments

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRAVEL TRIVIA)

 

3 Strange Facts About U.S. Monuments

The United States is a proud country, home to some breathtaking monuments that represent cornerstone events in our history. Many of these monuments are indelible parts of our culture, but few of us know their strange histories or the events that made them what they are today. Let’s review a few strange facts about these monuments you might not know.

The Washington Monument Is Multi-Colored

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Located in Washington, D.C., the monolithic Washington Monument is one of the most iconic monuments in U.S. history. Its construction began in 1848 as a tribute to George Washington’s legendary leadership throughout the American Revolution and ran for 36 years until it was finally completed in 1884.

When we think about the Washington Monument, most of us imagine a huge, pearl-white tower reaching upward into the sky — but did you know that the monument is actually multi-colored?

It’s true. Look at it and see for yourself. Although the base of the obelisk is light gray, you’ll notice a slight color shift midway up the tower (around the 150’ mark). Here, the color changes into a deeper, darker gray. This discoloration was a result of delayed construction in 1854, when political turmoil forced builders to separate construction into multiple phases. Although the initial foundation was laid in 1854, the second phase didn’t begin until 1876.

The second phase used a different type of granite than the initial base, which is why the color changes as you climb the tower. But given that the Civil War had just ended, most people had bigger problems to worry about.

Mount Rushmore Was Meant to Be Bigger

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Mount Rushmore is the world-famous monument carved into the Black Hills of Keystone, South Dakota, featuring four of America’s most revered presidents: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt. Each of the presidents’ faces are an impressive 60’ tall, though according to early records from its construction, the current monument is only a small fraction of what was planned.

Reports suggest that there were several other ideas for Mount Rushmore that were scrapped, such as the addition of their torsos, written script, and a museum-type room behind Lincoln’s head. Of course, none of these additions made it into Mount Rushmore’s final design. Funding was an ongoing problem, and by the time the initial work began, the builders were limited to chiseling the faces in granite.

The Statue of Liberty Was Bombed by the Germans

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Remember the days when tourists at the Statue of Liberty could walk inside the torch? Those days are long gone, though few people today remember why. Its closure is often thought to be a result of natural wear and tear that made the torch unsafe for tourists, but this is just a myth — and the actual story is much more interesting.

According to historical records, the Statue of Liberty was the victim of a WWI-era bombing campaign instigated by German soldiers. As the story goes, the Germans sought to destroy caches of weapons and munitions that were scheduled to be delivered to Allied forces in 1916. These munitions were located in New York Harbor—the same site as the Statue of Liberty, which had been dedicated just 30 years prior.

The Germans were successful. After midnight on July 30, a series of fires and small bombs set a few barges ablaze in the harbor, which caused a chain reaction of explosions from over 50 tons of TNT. The explosion and its accompanying shockwaves destroyed the nearby area, sending fragments and debris flying through the air. The shockwaves were so powerful that some of this debris made it as high as the Statue of Liberty’s torch, which was damaged by the shrapnel and subsequently closed.

Of course, it would eventually be replaced—but with a new torch that visitors couldn’t enter. So, you can thank the Germans for that one.

7 Most Visited Attractions in New York City

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRIP TRIVIA)

 

7 Most Visited Attractions in New York City

Call it befitting that The City That Never Sleeps lives in the dreams of citizens of the world. Home of the National Stock Exchange, high fashion, fine art, exquisite cuisine, and skyscrapers reaching high as the American Dream, New York consistently brings in millions of visitors from all over the globe. The most densely populated U.S. city has an endless list of attractions to explore on any given day, but a handful stand out with numbers as large as the city itself.

Times Square

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From New Year’s to the stock exchange, entertainment to dining, Times Square endures as an iconic center of thriving metropolitan life. With over 39 million visitors annually, “the center of the universe” is the most visited tourist site in the world. The staggering number of visitors to the square prompted the city to make adjustments to address the hectic streets when it established designated areas for performers, seating, and exit routes.

Brooklyn Bridge

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In spite of countless private sales, the Brooklyn Bridge remains the property of the city. The nearly 6,000-foot bridge connecting Brooklyn to Manhattan sees over 120,000 vehicles, 4,000 pedestrians, and 2,600 bicyclists daily. By choice or by necessity, the Brooklyn Bridge is one of New York’s busiest hot spots, offering an idyllic view of the harbor for misty-eyed tourists and disgruntled commuters alike.

Grand Central Terminal

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Driving through New York has never been for the faint of heart, making its public transit system a staple of many New Yorkers’ daily lives. Grand Central Terminal has been coined the “world’s loveliest station” with its opal glass clock, astronomical decorations, and fine dining. The beauty of its corridors attracts tourists and natives to breathe in the air of constant movement.

The 9/11 Memorial

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On September 11, 2001, the world shook in the face of horror and tragedy. From the ashes of the World Trade Center, America summoned its strength to erect a monument in honor of the loss of innocent lives and the courage of the first responders who gave theirs in turn at a moment’s notice. Ten million visitors have graced the grounds of the memorial since its opening in 2014.

The Empire State Building

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“Twas beauty that killed the beast,” but the tourists come for the view. At a height of 1,454 feet, the Empire State Building Observatory towers 102 stories above the heart of Manhattan with its breathtaking view of the New York City skyline. The National Historic Landmark continues to draw crowds, nearly competing with its own enormity. Over 110 million have visited the monument to date, with yearly totals around 3 million.

The Statue of Liberty

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Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to snap the perfect photo op for their Instagram account. Our green lady from France is still an internationally renowned landmark of the United States. Countless tourists from around the world and locals seeking a reminder of American history flock to the Statue of Liberty every year. In 2018, the Statue of Liberty saw 4.34 million recreational visitors.

The Metropolitan Art Museum

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The image of New York is one of busy city streets, larger-than-life ambitions, and world-class art. It’s this last point that has been drawing the biggest crowds of any single attraction in the city. 2018 saw a record high for the Metropolitan Art Museum with 7.35 million visitors. This last year, the Met housed an exhibit of over 200 installations of Michelangelo’s work titled “Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer.”

Treason = Impeachment = Hang Them High?

 

This article to you today is simply my attempt to get you to think about some very serious issues with our (the U.S.) government that does effect every person in this country as well as in many other Nations.  I’m writing this article in the form of ‘what if’s’. What if President Trump really isn’t the legitimate President and that ends up being proven beyond any reasonable doubt? Pretty much everyone on earth except Donald Trump knows and understands that the Russian government with orders from their President attacked the voting computers of 21 states during the 2016 U.S. elections. It is only logical that being if in deed Mr. Putin wanted Mr. Trump to win that election he would only target states that were expected to be somewhat close. If the Russian hackers had been ignorant they would have targeted states like New York and California where Hillary was going to win by huge amounts. If they had done that then everyone would have known that the machines had been compromised. Swinging a states numbers that were very close, say 52% to 48% for Hillary to a 52-48 for Trump would be believable. If this is what did happen and it can be proven, now what folks?

 

If Mr. Mueller and his team can prove that Mr. Trump along with members of his family and staff colluded with the Russian government to steal the election, is this treason? Personally I believe that it is, also personally I then believe that everything that Mr. Trump and the Congress has signed into law since January 20th of 2017 would have to be removed. Without a doubt this would really be a mess like this Nation has never had happen to us. For those of you who do not know me, do not get me wrong, I personally can’t stand the lying witch Hillary either and no, I did not vote for her, nor did I vote for Mr. Trump, I voted for Gary Johnson. There are some things that I believed about Hillary and Donald before the election in November of 2016 and nothing has changed my beliefs on these two since then. First, I believed that both people are total egomaniacs and both are totally habitual liars who will do anything for money or to win. Now the difference that I see in the two is that in my opinion Hillary is totally evil but she is also very smart, on the other hand Donald is very evil but he is about as ignorant of a person that I have ever come across. So, for President, should I have voted for a smart evil person or a dumb ass evil person? Which one would be the least evil for the American people? I thought Hillary would win and I do believe that she did, so I voted for a person that I knew very well was not going to garner more than a couple of percentage points.

 

Okay, I have made my point that I believe that Donald Trump, members of his immediate family and members of his personal staff are guilty of treason against the American people. Now I wont you to consider another issue please and this is the Republican Congress and the Republican Senate. Unless a person is clueless to reality it is very obvious that the majority of the Republicans in the Congress and the Senate can not stand Donald Trump as a person, yet they have in almost all issues sided with Mr. Trump on programs that Mr. Trump has wanted to make into law. The reason is simple folks, the Republicans realize that with a Republican in the White House they are able to get some of their own personal agenda passed into law, things like the new tax law and getting more Republicans onto the Supreme Court. This sickening display of cowardliness and treason by the Republican leaders like Senator McConnell is enough to make an Independent puke at the sight of their face and unfortunately he is my home state Senator so I see his face often. In the past I have voted for Republicans and Democrats at about a 50/50 clip but because of the disgusting display of Republicans kissing the ass of this dangerous un-genius stupid ass I will never ever vote for another Republican for any office at any level of government. Here is another slap of reality though, I totally believe that if Hillary was the current President the Democrats in the Congress and the Senate would be doing the exact same dirty tricks for her. Neither one of these ‘Parties’ gives a damn about the United States or of our people, they only care about their selves.

 

Now, what should ‘We The People’ do about it when Mr. Mueller and his team prove that these people have committed treason against us? Should we insist that those in Office be impeached as once? Should we insist that all of those folks be put into a maximum security prison for the rest of their lives and have all of their assets stripped from them and sold to the highest bidder with the proceeds put toward the National Debt? Should people in the Congress and the Senate like Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell suffer the same fate as those in the Executive Branch? Should they all be made an example of like being shot by a firing squad, or better yet, hung from the Statue Of Liberty for defiling Our Constitution and of ‘We The People’ of OUR NATION? What do you think should be done to these people if they are proven to be the Criminals that they all appear to be?