Voluntary Charity Gave Us the Statue of Liberty and the Salisbury Cathedral

by | Oct 3, 2022

764 years ago, the Salisbury Cathedral was consecrated in England. Considered the oldest example of early Gothic architecture in England, the old beauty maintains the largest cloister, the tallest spire, and the largest external park or “cathedral close,” of any cathedral in Britain. Inside are also one of the oldest continual-working clocks, and one of the 4 surviving copies of the Magna Carta….Construction was paid for by donations, principally from the canons and vicars of southeast England, who were asked to contribute a fixed annual sum until the building was completed.

– Good News in History September 20th, GoodNewsNetwork.org


According to the National Park Service, the idea of a monument presented by the French people to the United States was first proposed by Édouard René de Laboulaye, president of the French Anti-Slavery Society and a prominent and important political thinker of his time. The project is traced to a mid-1865 conversation between Laboulaye, a staunch abolitionist, and Frédéric Bartholdi, a sculptor…. Fundraising included advertising, exhibitions, public events, and the sale of souvenirs. Though wealthy individuals did contribute, it was the small donations of hundreds of thousands of working people and children on both sides of the Atlantic that made the Statue of Liberty a reality.

Raising Funds for Liberty, NPS.gov


For more on the philosophy of voluntaryism, see The Voluntaryist Handbook.

About Keith Knight

Keith Knight is Managing Editor at the Libertarian Institute, host of the Don't Tread on Anyone podcast and editor of The Voluntaryist Handbook: A Collection of Essays, Excerpts, and Quotes.

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