Saving Lady Liberty
Joseph Pulitzer’s Fight for the Statue of Liberty
By Claudia Friddell
Illustrated by Stacy Innerst
Calkins Creek/Boyds Mills & Kane
Here is the story of how the Statue of Liberty got its pedestal when Joseph Pulitzer, a Jewish immigrant and famous newsman, created one of the first American crowdfunding campaigns to raise money for it.
When Joseph Pulitzer first saw the Statue of Liberty’s head in Paris, he shared sculptor Auguste Bartholdi’s dream of seeing France’s gift of friendship stand in the New York harbor. Pulitzer loved words, and the word he loved best was liberty. Frustrated that many, especially wealthy New Yorkers, were not interested in paying for the statue’s needed pedestal, Pulitzer used his newspaper, the New York World, to call on all Americans to contribute. Claudia Friddell’s text and Stacy Innerst’s illustrations capture this inspiring story of how one immigrant brought together young and old, rich and poor, to raise funds for the completion of a treasured national monument.
Extensive Backmatter with afterword, fun facts about Lady Liberty and Joseph Pulitzer, quotations, photographs, timelines, and sources
Check out this link if you’d like to hear my interview along with my fabulous illustrator for Saving Lady Liberty, Stacy Innerst. It was a real treat to be interviewed by my editor, Carolyn Yoder, as Stacy and I shared researching, writing, and illustrating nuggets with New York City school librarians.
In this soaring account, which spans Pulitzer’s birth in Hungary to Lady Liberty’s debut in 1886, the author highlights both Pulitzer’s rags-to-riches personal success story and his profound idealism: he ‘had always loved words. And the word he loved best was liberty.’ Innerst adds to the high tone of this celebration with impressionistically brushed scenes of Lady Liberty’s grand features, her frail-looking champion bouncing back from multiple reverses, and ordinary people pitching in coins and small bills to see the iconic statue raised at last. Though histories of the Statue of Liberty often mention Pulitzer’s campaign, this is the most detailed presentation for younger audiences to date. Just another immigrant getting the job done.
—Booklist, starred review
Here’s a few illustrations from the book!