The Statue of liberty is a sculpture located in the New York Harbor on liberty island. It is one of the best known manmade landmarks in the world and is an icon of freedom. In 1984 the statue was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of the cultural significance of the site. The statue was a gift to the United States from the people of France and was opened on October 28, 1886. If you have ever wondered why the statue is green, keep reading to find the answer.
Why is the Statue of Liberty green?
Originally, the statue was a dull copper color, but in 1900 it began to turn the green color that it is famous for today. By 1906 it had completely turned green and engineers were worried that it was corroding. Congress authorized the painting of the statue to prevent corrosion, but there were loud protests from the public. After inspection from Army Corps of Engineers it was found that the statue was is perfect condition.
The reason that the statue became green was due to an affect called oxidation of the copper, that the statue is made from. It is caused when copper is exposed to air and/or seawater over a certain period of time. The oxidation reaction causes the green/blue copper salts to form on the outside of the statue. This is a common occurrence with copper and is referred to as verdigris or patina.