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March 2013

The Statue of Liberty's Complexion

JAMA Dermatol. 2013;149(3):306. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2013.2415

For many of us, the Statue of Liberty is a reminder of how our families immigrated to this land in years past, hoping for a better future. As their ships sailed into New York Harbor, our families were greeted by the image of a “mighty woman with a torch.” That description of the Statue of Liberty was given by Emma Lazarus in her famous poem “The New Colossus,” which is engraved on a plaque located in the monument's museum.

For over 125 years, the Statue of Liberty has endured storms, pounding rains, and the elements, which have altered her appearance. This article describes some of these cosmetic changes and their subsequent renovation, as it pays tribute to a great national landmark and to the ideals she represents. The article is also dedicated to the many talented immigrant physicians who have contributed to the spectacular growth and achievements of American medicine.

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