Mount Rushmore National Memorial
Mount Rushmore National Memorial is a famous monument in South Dakota, USA, that features the faces of four American presidents carved into the mountain. The monument attracts millions of visitors every year, and it has become a symbol of American patriotism and national pride.
The history and creation of Mount Rushmore
The idea to carve the faces of American leaders into the Black Hills of South Dakota originated with a South Dakota historian named Doane Robinson. Robinson envisioned a project that would attract tourists to the state and boost its economy. The sculptor Gutzon Borglum was chosen to lead the project, and he selected the four presidents whose faces would be carved into the mountain: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt. Construction on the monument began in 1927 and was completed in 1941, after Borglum’s death.
The debate over funding the memorial
The construction of Mount Rushmore faced significant opposition due to the debate over who would be responsible for funding the project. Some people believed that it was the responsibility of the federal government to finance the monument, while others argued that the state of South Dakota should bear the cost. The debate continued for several years until Congress passed a resolution in 1925 that provided $250,000 in federal funds for the project.
The involvement of US presidents in the project
Several US presidents played a role in the creation of Mount Rushmore. President Calvin Coolidge signed the legislation that provided federal funding for the project, and President Franklin D. Roosevelt continued to support the construction of the monument throughout his presidency. In addition, President Harry Truman visited the monument in 1947 and declared it a national shrine.
The financial challenges faced during the project
Despite the federal funding provided for the project, construction of Mount Rushmore faced several financial challenges. The project was expensive, and the Great Depression made it difficult to find additional sources of funding. As a result, Borglum had to scale back his plans for the monument, and construction was delayed for several years.
The contribution of individual donors to Mount Rushmore
Individual donors also played a significant role in funding the construction of Mount Rushmore. The largest donor was Charles Rushmore, a lawyer from New York who donated $5,000 to the project. Other donors included members of Congress, state officials, and private citizens who contributed funds to help complete the monument.
Franklin D. Roosevelt’s role in supporting the memorial
Franklin D. Roosevelt was a strong supporter of the Mount Rushmore project. He recognized the potential economic benefits that the monument could bring to South Dakota, and he believed that it would serve as a symbol of American patriotism and national pride. Roosevelt provided significant financial support for the project during his presidency, and he visited the monument several times to check on its progress.
Analysis of the financial support provided by Roosevelt
During his presidency, Roosevelt provided $1 million in federal funds for the construction of Mount Rushmore. This money helped to cover the cost of labor, materials, and equipment needed to complete the monument. In addition, Roosevelt used his executive powers to approve additional funding for the project when it was needed.
The impact of the Great Depression on funding Mount Rushmore
The Great Depression had a significant impact on the funding of Mount Rushmore. Many Americans were struggling financially, and there was little support for spending money on a monument. As a result, funding for the project was limited, and construction was delayed for several years.
The final cost of the Mount Rushmore project
The final cost of the Mount Rushmore project was $989,992.32. This amount included all of the labor, materials, and equipment needed to complete the monument. It did not include the cost of maintaining and operating the monument, which is still funded by the federal government today.
Conclusion: The enduring legacy of Mount Rushmore
Despite the financial challenges it faced, Mount Rushmore remains an enduring symbol of American patriotism and national pride. The monument attracts millions of visitors every year, and it serves as a reminder of the important contributions that our nation’s leaders have made to our country’s history.
References and further reading on Mount Rushmore’s funding
- "Mount Rushmore." National Park Service. Accessed 13 August 2021. https://www.nps.gov/moru/index.htm
- "Mount Rushmore History." Black Hills & Badlands. Accessed 13 August 2021.
- "Mount Rushmore National Memorial." History.com. Accessed 13 August 2021.