Lady Liberty has new little sister in N.Y.

The Statue of Liberty replica seen outside a building on New York's Madison Avenue.
CBS

The Statue of Liberty just got a sibling. She's only nine feet tall, and lives on land, near her big sister's home in New York Harbor.

The full-size Statue of Liberty, CBS News' Bigad Shaban points out, is 151 feet tall. A gift from France, she has stood as a symbol of freedom in America for nearly 125 years.

But a few miles away, in front of a Madison Avenue skyscraper, there's a new Lady Liberty in town.

Real estate developer Leonard Stern brought her to the U.S. from France, a rare replica with historic ties to the original.

So how much did it cost?

Stern tells CBS News, "Well over a million dollars, and just stop there."

When asked if the statue was worth it, Stern said, "Priceless. What it represents, it represents our fundamental values in this country."

Before creating the actual Statue of Liberty, sculptor Frederic Auguste Bertholdi made a miniature plaster model, 16 times smaller. And using new digital technology, France was able to use that very model to cast American's newest Lady Liberty.

The French government is only allowing 12 copies to be made, and when Stern heard about their production, he knew he had to have one of them.

Stern says, "Whatever it was, I would have paid it."

And with this version, there was no assembly required -- unlike the full-size statue that had to be shipped to New York in pieces in 1885. It took four months to put back together.

Over the next six decades, her gaze would welcome over 12 million immigrants to the U.S. as they made their way through nearby Ellis Island. Now, four million people visit the site annually.

In November, the Statue of Liberty will close for a year's worth of repairs. Shaban says that could mean more visitors for her new miniature Manhattan twin. Shaban adds, "Just don't expect any walking tours to the top."