Mount Rushmore - South Dakota Historic Site

Presidents at Mount Rushmore

Where is Mount Rushmore?

The site is in Keystone about 35 miles south of Rapid City, South Dakota at 13000 Highway 244, Keystone, South Dakota.

Mount Rushmore Map

Did you know: Thomas Jefferson was originally carved on the right side of Washington, but due to cracking after 2 years, was 'blasted off' and recarved on the left.

Did you know: Mount Rushmore was named after a New York attorney visiting the area to check on mining titles.

George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln look out over the South Dakota landscape from their spots carved into the mountain by sculptor Gutzon Borglum. Originally based on an idea by Doane Robinson in 1923, the superintendent of the South Dakota State Historical Society, to bring people to the Black Hills of South Dakota.

"Receiving permission to do the carving, finding funding and managing personalities were all a part of the challenge to establish Mount Rushmore National Memorial. At times it seemed harder to keep the project going than it was to do the colossal carving of the four presidents. In the end, cooler heads, charm, and determination saw the memorial through to the end." Work began in 1924, but was slowed by funding issues. The project was declared completed in 1941, two years after Borglum died.

How did Mount Rushmore get it's name? In the 1880's, Keystone, a booming mining town, was visited by Charles E. Rushmore, a young New York attorney, to check on mining titles. Mr. Rushmore arrived in the area in 1885 representing the Harney Peak Consolidated Tin Company, LTD., located at Pine Camp just north of an “unnamed” mountain. Out traveling to examine claims, Rushmore passed by the unnamed mountain. He asked his guide, William Challis, “What is the name of that mountain?” Challis jestingly replied in his now famous quote - “It's never had any but it has now-we'll call the damn thing Rushmore.” Later, Charles Rushmore donated $5,000 toward the sculpting of “Mount Rushmore.

While in the area, also visit the Crazy Horse Memorial, Bad Lands National Park, Wall Drugs and the wild west town of Deadwood where Wild Bill Hickok was killed during a game of cards.

Mount Rushmore is a testament to the vision, drive and determination of those great men to build a better society and spread democratic principles throughout the North American continent. More about Mount Rushmore...

Mount Rushmore - Gene Pisasale as Aide de Camp with General Washington (Portrayed by Carl Closs) Mount Rushmore - George Washington (Portrayed by Carl Closs) Mount Rushmore Sculpture