The Statue of Liberty was given to the United States as a gift from the people of France in 1886. It was originally meant as an emblem of the friendship between the two nations, but over the years it has come to mean much more. The Statue of Liberty has come to represent the promise of America—a promise that drew tens of millions of immigrants from other countries, seeking greater freedom and opportunities. For many of these immigrants, Lady Liberty was the first thing they saw when they arrived in the United States. The Statue of Liberty has also served as a symbol of freedom for those who are oppressed throughout the world.