Let Liberty Rise! How America’s Schoolchildren Helped Save the Statue of Liberty by Chana Stiefel, illustrated by Chuck Groenink

Published by Scholastic Press

Let Liberty Rise!: How America's Schoolchildren Helped Save the Statue of  Liberty: Stiefel, Chana, Groenink, Chuck: 9781338225884: Amazon.com: Books

Summary:  When the crates containing the pieces of the Statue of Liberty arrived in New York, there was one problem: the pedestal for the statue was only half-built, and there didn’t seem to be much interest in raising the $100,000 needed to complete it.  Then Joseph Pulitzer, an immigrant himself and owner of the New York World newspaper, wrote in his paper, “Let us not wait for the millionaires to give money.  [The Statue of Liberty] is a gift of the whole people of France to the whole people of America.”  The “whole people of America”, including many children, rose to the occasion, sending the pennies and dollars that they could afford to build the pedestal.  By August, the full amount had been raised from 120,000 donors, and on October 28, 1886, about a million people came to New York to celebrate the new statue.  Includes a timeline, additional facts about the Statue of Liberty, a bibliography of books and websites, and two pages of photos and a map.  40 pages; grades K-4.

Pros:  Excellent nonfiction, with just the right balance of engaging and informative, and the perfect amount of back matter–love all those photos!

Cons:  It was a little anti-climactic to learn in the back matter that the original $100,000 price tag eventually jumped to $320,000 when construction began.  Fortunately, additional donors and Congress footed the bill.

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