Even though I’ve made it my 2011 goal to rush less, today I decided to Rushmore. Heh. Get it? Sorry. A little road trip humor goes a long way, doesn’t it?
My family loves a good history lesson. Seriously, if you need help with numbers, only Steve will be useful to you, but if you want answers to questions like “What was Mozart’s sister’s name?” me and my kids are here for you. We love completely random, non-sequential history facts upon which we will not be tested, so our trip to Mt. Rushmore was right up our collective alley.
A few facts about the monument:
It is surrounded by breathtaking scenery:
LOTS of people are fans of random, non-sequential history facts which are memorialized in stone.
This is quite early – about 30 minutes after it opened. Everyone wants their picture taken with the presidents!
It really is magnificent. No other word quite works.
Does it look like my family is busy trading stocks while visiting a National Monument?
If they were better at math, that might be true. However, those aren’t cell phones…they’re audio tours.
These little rentable devices tell you BOATLOADS of information about the monument and how it was built. For instance, the sculptor, Gutzon Borglum was a polygamist who was married to a woman named Elizabeth and her sister. Heh. At $5, these little doo-dads are worth every penny.
The tour begins with the walk of flags.
There are 56 flags in the Walk of Flags and if I was a better blogger, or better at math I would remember why there are 56 instead of the good old fashioned American number 50. I know my little doo-dad even told me why, but…nope – can’t remember. In lieu of an actual fact, I will say that it’s the number of Mr. Borglum’s wives. Please don’t quote me.
When I say that Josiah loves Thomas Jefferson, I mean that he was the only 8-year-old I know who had pictures of him in his bedroom. He loves him. And he loves the Declaration of Independence. So, this memorial? Josiah’s idea of a good time.
Though she owns no posters, Tess has a special fondness for President Lincoln.
Here’s a look at Washington, who really got the very best spot on the monument:
One question I had upon arrival was: why Roosevelt?
The answer my doo-dad gave me was: because that’s what the sculptor wanted. I’m sure there’s a potter/clay sermon analogy in there somewhere.
Still, no one ever questions Abe Lincoln’s inclusion in anything. It would be nice to live a life with such clear results, wouldn’t it?
Mt. Rushmore is undoubtedly a stunning achievement, but these guys are still my favorite works of art.
Next up: On the road again to Wyoming. Buffalo. Big horn sheep. No Starbucks.