Those four presidential heads are big, aren’t they? The ones carved in rock in South Dakota, US.
Mount Rushmore is probably one of the world’s most recognisable landmarks. It’s certainly one of America’s most prominent and impressive man-made sights. There’s more to it than aesthetic magnificence.
Behind the four heads of past US presidents, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln – four men who make the country’s current leader look even sillier – is something marvellously intriguing.
A large chamber
Constructed between 1927 and 1941, the sculptor, Gutzon Borglum, first planned to create a fourth image to accompany the four presidents. It would have been the ‘story’ of America. But Gutzon was forced to abandon his plans as the carving would have been too intricate to achieve.
As an alternative, the government allowed Gutzon permission to start work on a Hall of Records – somewhere to store America’s most coveted and important documents.
Sadly, Gutzon died before completing his chamber. But in the late 1990s, the project was brought back to life, and the hallways and rooms were finally finished. Today, they stock American history, including the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. Important paperwork indeed – sealed in a titanium vault.
It may be that in thousands of years (if humans are still around), explorers will stumble on the documentation and learn about the nation. Tourists today, though, are not allowed access. The chamber cannot be reached by foot. We imagine security is rather tight, too.