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Top 10 Symbols of America

VO: Rebecca Brayton
Script Written by Craig Butler. They evoke pride and pleasure in Americans, reminding them of their past achievements and responsibility for the future. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the top 10 symbols of America. For this list, we’re taking a look at iconic monuments, objects, and people that epitomize everything the land of the free and the home of the brave stands for. Special thanks to our users jackcooper and lucacraig for submitting the idea on our Suggestion Tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 10 Symbols of America


They evoke pride and pleasure in Americans, reminding them of their past achievements and responsibility for the future. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 symbols of America.

For this list, we’re taking a look at iconic monuments, objects, and people that epitomize everything the land of the free and the home of the brave stands for.

#10: Hollywood Sign

For decades, the films of Hollywood crafted dreams that reflected the tenor of the times for Americans– and helped solidify the country’s reputation with moviegoers in far distant lands. Created in 1923, the world famous Hollywood sign looks down on Los Angeles from Mount Lee in the Hollywood Hills. Ironically, the sign – which originally spelled out Hollywoodland – was intended to advertise a new housing development. Through the years the “land” was dropped – and what was intended to be a temporary advertising gimmick has become a permanent cultural icon.

#9: Golden Gate Bridge

Not a lot of bridges are recognizable as this one – but not many bridges are as stunning as San Francisco’s Golden Gate. Spanning 1.7 miles, the bridge leaps across the Golden Gate strait to connect San Francisco and Marin County, a bright vermillion against the blue sky. Since 1937, commuters and travelers have been fortunate to cross what has been called the most photographed bridge in the world. The Golden Gate has a sleek appearance that is especially striking when lit at night; its beauty and status as a Modern Wonder of the World represent American ingenuity at its best.

#8: New York Yankees

Baseball is often called America’s pastime, and if there’s one team that’s an emblem of the sport, it’s the New York Yankees. Brash, competitive and powerful, the Yankees reflect the American spirit. Plus, they don’t get by strictly on image. This is, after all, the team that gave the world such major league legends as Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Yogi Berra, Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle. The Yankees have been World Series champs more than two dozen times; it’s no wonder they’re asymbol of America for many.

#7: Mount Rushmore

During uncertain times, it’s always encouraging to look up at four of the most influential Americansthat ever lived. In the middle of a South Dakota mountain range, sixty-foot tall carvings of the heads of Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln look over us. Created by Gutzon Borglum, a Danish-American sculptor, and his son, Lincoln, Mount Rushmore spreads across almost 1300 acres – in short, this massive monument will take your breath away. Completed in 1941 after 14 years, Mount Rushmore is viewed by more than two million people every year.

#6: Cowboys

Jingle-jangling spurs, Stetson hats, chaps, and an amazing dexterity with both a lasso and a six-shooter: that’s the image of the American west cowboy. An emblem of the rugged individual, the cowboy is renowned for his independence, courage and love of solitude. The wide-open spaces are his home because his spirit is too free to stand being cooped up. Although inextricably linked with the battle of the Alamo, the cowboy is more often thought of as a loner – riding the prairies to carve out a place where he can be himself.

#5: Uncle Sam

He wears a blue tailcoat, a white top hat with a blue band and white stars, and red and white striped trouser. With his taste in sartorial splendor, is there any doubt that Uncle Sam is a popular Americanicon? As far as can be determined, the figure now known as Uncle Sam originated sometime near the War of 1812. He reached a new peak of popularity in World War I when James Montgomery Flagg solidified his look, putting him forward as the face of army recruitment and national patriotism.

#4: Washington, D.C. Buildings

Washington, D.C., the seat of governmental power in the United States, is also home to a staggering array of architectural beauties that represent the country and its rich history. The 1.9-mile long National Mall contains several of these buildings, including the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial and the U.S. Capitol. Only blocks away at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue sits the White House, residence of the sitting President of the United States. These buildings are not only of great architectural interest, but symbolize the country’s commitment to the ideals upon which it was founded.

#3: Bald Eagle

Legend has it that Ben Franklin would’ve preferred the national bird of America be the turkey. Whether that’s true or not, the bald eagle has soared into the American imagination as the perfectsymbol. The bold bird can be found on numerous official representations of the country, including the Great Seal of the United States and the seal of the President of the United States. With its long life, brave demeanor and physical strength, the bald eagle is considered by many citizens as an apt choice to represent America.

#2: Statue of Liberty

The Empire State Building may stand taller, but the Statue of Liberty’s status as a beacon of freedom makes her one of America’s most popular landmarks. An incredibly generous gift from the people of France, Frédéric Bartholdi’s glorious sculpture has graced New York Harbor since 1886. Along with the nearby Ellis Island, the statue receives millions of visitors each year from across the country and around the world. Though the United States continues to struggle with immigration issues, the poem that adorns the Statue’s pedestal reminds citizens of its commitment to those from other lands.

Before we reveal our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- Liberty Bell
- The Pentagon
- Gateway Arch

#1: Stars and Stripes

The national flag of the United States is recognizable worldwide. Contrary to popular legend, it’s never been confirmed Betsy Ross sewed the first Stars and Stripes; however, it is true that the thirteen alternating red and white stripes stand for the original thirteen colonies. The stars on a field of blue represent the total number of states in the country, which currently stands at 50. Old Glory, as the Stars and Stripes is also known, reminds American citizens of the sacrifices its men and women have made in the name of independence.

Do you agree with our list? What other unbeatable popular American symbols deserve to be on this list? For more enthralling top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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