My Father’s Mountain

Alamo Height’s resident, Lincoln Borglum finished “Mount Rushmore National Memorial” after his father, Gutzon Borglum, died in 1941. The model for the Black Hills monument was carved by Gutzon in his studio at 2315 Ave. B, in Brackenridge Park, San Antonio, Texas, where it is presently being renovated.

Lincoln Borglum tells a story in his book “My Father’s Mountain” of Gutzon entrusting him with the studio carved model of Mount Rushmore to deliver to the Black Hills worksite. Out of school for the summer, Lincoln loaded the mock up in his car and headed to South Dakota. Somewhere along the way he fell asleep, rolled the car and the model was severely damaged. The four presidents’ heads were no longer attached to the base.

Gutzon’s idea for a monument to our presidents came about on a camping trip in the Black Hills of the Dakotas in 1925. The monument to our nation’s presidents became Gutzon’s life work and his dream. After Gutzon’s death in 1941, his son, Lincoln, completed his father’s mountain. Starting the project at the age of 60, Gutzon prepared his son, Lincoln, from the age of 12 to carry on in the event of his death.

After finishing the Masterpiece of the National Park System, Lincoln became the first park superintendent at the monument. He would move to Beeville, Texas in 1950 to raise Hereford cattle. He died in Corpus Christi in 1986. Many of the Borglum family still reside in South Texas.


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