"the trusted voice of teens who travel"
September 12th, 2011
Mount Rushmore is one of America’s most popular and incredible attractions of all time, with over 2 million visitors each year. Four of America’s greatest presidents: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln, are immortalized here in a weathered granite cliff.
The Mama Bus drove through a beautiful pine forest on the way to Mount Rushmore. It was sadly devastated by pine bore beetles, but beautiful nonetheless. As we drove, we passed through narrow tunnels, carved into the huge granite outcroppings. The really amazing thing was that all of the tunnels were perfectly positioned to give all who pass through them an excellent view of Mount Rushmore! It was very impressive!
On our entry into the park, Mom got us all Junior Ranger Activity Packets. They were workbooks, filled with interesting facts and games, as well as various bits and pieces of information that we had to fill out. Normally I’m not all that enthusiastic about those, but these were really well done and very interesting.
The idea for Mount Rushmore was thought up by Doane Robinson, But a man named Gutzon Borglum was the actual sculptor who was hired by the government to carve the president’s faces into the cliff. It took him seventeen years of his time and effort, but only fourteen of those years were spent actually working on the cliff side due to money shortages.
Work on Mount Rushmore started right after the Great Depression. Therefore, the wages of a 25 cents or more that Borglum paid his workers were considered very good. However, as one of the workers said “Sometimes we would only work for three to four months at a time. To get six months in a row was pretty good.” Borglum was also considered a very hard man to work with, as he tolerated no nonsense.
So far on this Mama Bus adventure, Mount Rushmore and all that it signifies in the American culture, has been my favorite stop.