Mt Rushmore Hall of Records

Posted on Monday, November 24th, 02008 by Alexander Rose - Twitter: @zander
link Categories: Clock of the Long Now, Long Term Art   chat 0 Comments

It turns out that Borglum, the man behind Mt Rushmore, also built an underground area behind the giant presidential heads to be a “Hall of Records” (entrance pictured above).

“Into this room the records of what our people aspired to and what they have accomplished should be collected and preserved, and on the walls of this room should be cut the literal records of the conception of our republic, its successful creation, the record of its westward movement to the Pacific, its presidents, how the memorial was built and, frankly. Why.”

– Gutzon Borglum.

It was never completed past the first 70 feet, but a recent effort by the historical society placed a small cache of records there.  Rushmore is an interesting case where one man’s obsession (carving the mountain into presidential faces) later became a monument synonymous with national identity.  I had no idea there was a “library” like function also associated with it.

  • I can’t imagine a better place for a national library archive, from the longevity of the mountain to the symbolic relationship between human heads and a collection of knowledge. It’s a shame that it wasn’t complete, but it does stir imagination.

  • Pingback: Memnison Journal » The Hall of Records in Mount Rushmore:()

  • Brian Burdick

    Greetings – In doing research on the Movie “National Treasure 2 Book of Secrets” I discovered the following. No huge room excists behind Rushmore’ as depicts the movie. However, there was a “hall of records” room carved by the sculptor to house records of man’s/society’s achievments – and reportedly these were chisled into enormously large slabs of stone. Has anybody heard of this, and do these slabs of inscripted stones exist. It would be great if some could share some insight. This is Christmas Eve 2009 – so I hope all have a safe and prosperous holiday amidst a drifting world.

  • 2knowisgood

    If you are still curious about Mt. Rushmore and the “secret” Hall of Records, and further info about it, then watch the program Decoded on the History cable channel and that epesode (which I am watching now in repeat).


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