A Brief History
On November 19, 1887, Emma Lazarus, the author of “The New Colossus,” a sonnet that appears on a plaque at the base of the Statue of Liberty, died in New York city at the age of 38, possibly of Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Despite her brief life, her famous poem is familiar to almost all Americans. Is it in fact the most famous American poem?
Here are some contenders for that title, and you can tell us if one of these poems is the most famous American verse or nominate your own in the comments section for this article:
Clement Clarke Moore’s A Visit from St. Nicholas.
Edgar Allen Poe’s “The Raven.”
Emma Lazarus’s “The New Colossus.”
Ernest Thayer’s “Casey at the Bat/”
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s “Paul Revere’s Ride.”
Robert Frost’s “Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening.”
Question for students (and subscribers): Tell us, what is America’s greatest poem? Please let us know in the comments section below this article.
Your readership is much appreciated!
See our related article “History Short: Who is America’s Greatest Poet?”
For more information, please see…
Contemporary Books. 101 Great Poems of America. Contemporary Books, 1992.
The American Poetry & Literacy Project. 101 Great American Poems. Dover Publications, 1998.
The featured image in this article, a photograph of a plaque inside the base of the Statue of Liberty with the sonnet “The New Colossus” by Emma Lazarus, is in the public domain in the United States because it is a work prepared by an officer or employee of the United States Government as part of that person’s official duties under the terms of Title 17, Chapter 1, Section 105 of the US Code.
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