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Chapter 11 for Tennessee company holding Statue of Liberty scraps

Gold Leaf Corporation, a company from Nashville, Tennessee that acquired pieces of the Statue of Liberty during a renovation project in 1984, is filing for bankruptcy after an investor who kept the company afloat sued them. The man who invested in Gold Leaf Corp. won more than $300,000 after a judge ruled in his favor, and now the company is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

That move will put a halt to any litigation between Gold Leaf Corp. and its disgruntled lender, giving the company time to assess its financial situation and reorganize, if it is needed. Gold Leaf Corp. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in Chattanooga, Tennessee and the case is ongoing.

So what exactly was Gold Leaf Corp. planning to do with scraps from the Statue of Liberty? During an eight-year project to restore the iconic American figure, Gold Leaf Corp. received hundreds of thousands of pounds worth metal, pipes and wood from the Statue of Liberty.

Gold Leaf Corp. was selling these excess pieces to another company called Liberty's Legacy, which produces replica statues of Lady Liberty for purchase. Gold Leaf Corp. also used their leftover materials for more outrageous means. They sent some pieces to the TV show "American Choppers," where the cast created a Liberty Bike motorcycle. Gold Leaf Corp. also utilized some wood from Ellis Island to make a specially designed guitar.

Ultimately the venture did not prove very fruitful, and with their main investor winning a substantial settlement in their court battle, Chapter 11 bankruptcy was seemingly Gold Leaf Corporation's best option.

Source: Wall Street Journal, "Company That Sold Statue of Liberty Scraps Seeks Chapter 11," Katy Stech, Feb. 24, 2012

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