Mount Rushmore, what a site! Our journey continues, and it brought us here.
This beautiful, serene and colossal place is overwhelming.
Surrounded by the Black Hills of South Dakota, Mount Rushmore stands majestically, showcasing the figures of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln, created by Gutzon Borglum.
The presidents represent 150 years of American history.
Words cannot express the beauty of the place. As you enter the Mount Rushmore National Memorial, you are welcomed by a long walkway flanked with all the state’s and territories’ flags in alphabetical order.
An emotional welcome into the park.
In front of us, this gorgeous masterpiece stands. A short pathway leads us to it.
As I stood below Washington, the first of the president’s statues, I felt his eyes looking at me. The smoothness of the stone. The eye socket that focused looks as if he is ready to speak to you any minute.
Mr. Borglum selected those four presidents for Mount Rushmore because they represented the most critical events in the history of the United States.
Borglum, a sculptor, started the design and oversaw the project from 1927 to 1941, with his son Lincoln assisting him.
Unfortunately, he died a few months before completing his masterpiece in 1941. His son brought his vision to a completed project.
Workers endured conditions that sprawled from blistering sun to bitter cold. 90% of the mountain was carved using dynamite. Nearly 400 men and women worked on this project.
At the beginning of the construction of Mount Rushmore, workers would each day climb 700 steps to the top of the mountain.
Toward the end of the project, the steps were replaced by carts going back and forth.
The sculptures are carved into granite. Dynamite is followed by workers drilling holes close together in the granite, or honeycombing processing, allowing small pieces of granite to be removed by hand.
George Washington, the First President of the United States.
Washington led the colonists in the American Revolutionary War to win independence from Great Britain. The father of our country.
The founder of American Democracy. In Borglum’s eye he represented the birth of the United States.
Thomas Jefferson, the Third President of the United States.
Jefferson was the primary author of the Declaration of Independence. He also purchased the Louisiana Territory from France in 1803.
Therefore, doubling the size of the country. Jefferson was selected as he represented the growth of the United States.
Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th President of the United States.
Roosevelt provided leadership as the US was entering the 20th century and was experiencing rapid economic growth.
He was instrumental in negotiating the construction of the Panama Canal, linking the east and the west. Borglum chose Roosevelt to represent the development of the United States.
Abraham Lincoln, the 16th President of the United States
Lincoln had strong beliefs and a duty to preserve the Union together during the Civil War.
Abolished slavery, strengthened the federal government, and modernized the U.S. economy.
He issued the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863, ordering the Army to protect escaped slaves and encouraging border states to outlaw slavery.
Lincoln represented the preservation of the United States at Mount Rushmore.
Until our next adventure…