Statue of Liberty

Statue of Liberty

This rare view of the Statue of Liberty (Liberty Enlightening the World) in New York Harbor was taken in the year it was officially dedicated, which took place October 28, 1886.

E.H. Hart was a New York City based photographer with a studio at 1162 Broadway when contracted by the Photo-Gravure Co. of New York in 1886 to make several views of the statue. The company copyrighted one of these that year, titling it “Liberty”. A surviving example in the form of a mounted woodburytype process photograph is held by the National Archives at College Park in the U.S. state of Maryland. (Identifier: 45701938)

This variant by Hart includes the intriguing presence of six people appearing as “ghosts” at the base of the pedestal to the statue, their likeness due to movement during the long time-exposure required. The photographer billed himself an official U.S. Naval photographer, although it’s unclear if he was an employee of the Federal Government. A contract photographer for the Detroit Publishing Company in the late 19th Century, he is also the author and publisher of the 1898 volume “The Authentic Photographic Views of the United States Navy

Statue of Liberty

Image Dimensions17.2 x 10.1 | 20.9 x 12.5 cm Japan tissue (printed ca. 1897-1900)

Support Dimensions23.5 x 20.0 | 29.0 x 22.2 cm Cream colored paper/White Linen secondary support