simple is beautiful
New York Daily Photo: Little Lady Liberty
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Thursday, 26 April 2007

Little Lady Liberty

While at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden for Hanami (cherry blossom viewing), I noticed the most bizarre sight - a huge replica of the Statue of Liberty in their parking lot. I took a photo, not really intending to use it, but investigation led to the most fascinating story. The statue was built and installed in 1902 by William H. Flattau, a Russian born auctioneer who, proud of his newly adopted country, wanted a replica of the 151-foot original (created by the French sculptor Frédéric-Auguste Bartholdi) to grace the roof of his eight-story Liberty Warehouse. The warehouse, located at 43 W. 64th Street, was built by Flattau in 1891. The statue, galvanized steel over an iron framework, was made in Akron, Ohio, cut in half (to ship through the railroad tunnels) and rewelded. Until 1912, visitors could climb a circular staircase to an opening at the top of the statue's head (much like the original on Bedloe Island), affording views of the area. The statue sat on top of the building for over 100 years when in 2001, the Athena group announced plans to develop the building into coop apartments, adding 4 floors and removing the 30 foot statue. In 2002 it was donated to the Brooklyn Museum of Art in honor of the police officers, firefighters and other emergency workers killed on September 11, 2001. Conservation work has been completed. And that's how it got where it is ...


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