What Was That Date Again?



Young people often mention that there are too many dates when you study history.  A quote heard more often is that history repeats itself.  Let us not put a date on the story that follows and guess when it was written.


“…….., the earnest young superintendent assigned by the DOI, regarded the birthday as particularly significant in that it opened what would probably be the most eventful year in the statue’s life.  Attendance has soared at the statue during the year and he was confident it would break all records next year.  He said that in the twelve months ending Sept. 30, 257,000 visitors had made the trip from the Battery and added modestly, that no other total on record was quite as good.  He cautioned that the records do not go back further than five years ago, but was sure the good showing indicated that “people have more money,” and that “there is more travel.”  Out-of-towners are still strong for the statue.


“The crowds were so dense during the past summer,” he continued between announcements to a line waiting for the elevator in the entrance corridor, “that a walk-down system was mandatory.  That is, you could ride the ten stories to the top of the pedestal if you do not mind waiting perhaps half an hour, but all rides down were canceled.  The statue management made no public announcement of the new policy, the superintendent said, because they were not the least bit worried it might shoo people away.”


“But it is funny how fast news travels about the statue” he remarked, “Everybody getting off the boat seemed to know they had to walk down, but more came than ever.”*


Here is another article.  The headline is “The …. Workers on Ellis Island Fail in Plea for Pay for Time Spent on Ferryboats.”  Seems the workers wanted to have their six-hour work day include the time spent on Ellis Island ferryboats coming to and from work.  After the commissioner explained that their six hours’ work must be figured exclusive of the time for transportation or for the two rest periods allowed daily, the workers agreed that they had no grievance. 


Didn’t we just write that!


Bill Maurer


Liberty Island


  • The Superintendent was George A. Palmer. The date of the NY Times article was    10/28/1935

** These were the WPA workers as reported by the NY Times on 5/24/1936.