Emma Lazarus

Lead: At first reluctant, Emma Lazarus gave in and wrote the words that helped build the symbol of America's welcome.

Intro.: "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: The money wasn't coming in and Joseph Pulitzer was becoming very frustrated. Publisher of the New York World, a Hungarian immigrant who fought in the Civil War, Pulitzer had taken, as his personal crusade, the task of raising money to build the pedestal on which the colossus was to rest. The arrangement was that France would supply the statue if the United States would build the base. Work in Paris was on schedule but in America, people did not seem to be very concerned.

 

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Jean-Jacques Rousseau II

Lead: Accepted as a part of the brilliant literary and cultural society of Paris in the mid-1700s, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, however, never felt quite at home.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: His early youth, spent in one of Geneva’s upper class families, was disrupted by his mother’s death and father’s exile. The resulting social come down gave Rousseau a life-long sense of insecurity and hunger for approval from the wealthy and well-connected. After his 1742 arrival in Paris Rousseau gravitated to the leading intellectual figures of the city cultivating a friendship with many such as the Encyclopedist, Denis Diderot. He soon, however, broke with them over the question of progress. In A Discourse on the Origins of Inequality, begun in late 1753, Rousseau describes primitive man in his idyllic state, basically good in the moral sense, free of the cumbersome burdens of modern society - culture, government, education, even family - here truly was uncorrupted man, the noble savage.

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Jean-Jacques Rousseau I

Lead: In 1712 at the southern end of Lake Geneva hard by the French frontier lay the municipal republic of Geneva. In that year was born one of the west’s most influential social critics, Jean-Jacques Rousseau.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Rousseau’s aristocratic mother died in childbirth and he was raised and educated by his father, a restless artisan who preferred upper class diversions, hunting, dancing, dueling, to his watch-making duties. Rousseau’s early education consisted mostly of readings from the ancient Roman author Plutarch. As an adolescent, he was apprenticed first to a notary and then a brutish and cruel engraver. Rousseau washed out with both. His downward social spiral was humiliating to him and to escape he converted, for a short time, to Catholicism. After a wandering youth, he arrived in Paris in 1742 filled with great hopes and ambition.

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Suez Canal III

Lead: Facing almost universal skepticism, the Suez Canal Company under Ferdinand de Lesseps raised the money and dug the Canal.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Prime Minister Palmerston of Britain called him a swindler and a fool. Bankers such as Baron de Rothschild rejected his pleas for capital. Yet, de Lesseps succeeded against all odds. Raising money from small investors and operating with a design approved by the International Commission for the Piercing of the Isthmus of Suez, he broke ground in 1859 near the future Port Said. It took ten years to construct the canal. At any given point 30,000 workers were employed often under harsh, forced conditions. More than a million were so engaged and thousands of laborers died on the project. Progress was often delayed by labor disputes and the outbreak of diseases such as cholera, but in the end the canal was completed primarily due to the importation of giant French-designed steam shovels and dredges.

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Suez Canal II

Lead: In 1869, finally, the land bridge between Egypt and Suez was pierced with a canal, thanks in large measure to Ferdinand de Lesseps.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: He was no engineer, had no great fortune, had no access to capital, and was in no way an effective administrator, unanimated by tedium. Yet, if anyone might be called the Father of the Suez, it was de Lesseps. Other than his indefatigable energy and dedication to the project, he largely succeeded in building the canal because of his personal connection to two people.

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Suez Canal I

Lead: In 1869 French engineers and Egyptian laborers completed work eliminating one of the world’s two great blocks to navigation. They opened the canal at Suez.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Until the 19th and 20th centuries there were two significant places in the world where the passage of oceangoing commerce and transportation were impeded by relatively short land bridges. The Isthmus of Panama fell before the assaults of U.S. doctors and engineers in 1914. Creating a passage between the Mediterranean and the Red Sea was much longer in coming. It had attracted the attention of rulers such as Ramesses II of the 12th Egyptian dynasty in the 2nd Millennium BCE and Persian conqueror Darius I. They built narrow canals from the Nile to the Red Sea but these soon fell into disuse.

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Raphael Semmes, Rebel Sailor

Lead: Raphael Semmes sailed the Alabama out of Cherbourg, France to do battle.

Intro: "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: On Sunday morning June 19, 1864, the Confederate States' steamer Alabama, the pride of the Confederate navy, had just been around the world on voyage of destruction that did serious damage to the United States Merchant marine. From Galveston, Texas through the Atlantic, around the Cape of Good Hope, into the Indian Ocean, the Alabama had captured and destroyed 62 Union ships. At 900 tons and 230 feet long, she could make 13 knots between steam and sail, boasted 8 guns and cost $250,000 Confederate dollars. She was commanded by the Confederate navy's finest sailor, Raphael Semmes.

 

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