Mount Rushmore National Memorial

Mount Rushmore National Memorial

Roosevelt

The only presidential selection to draw any measure of criticism was that of Theodore Roosevelt, the nation's 26th president. 

Some academics argued that history had not yet judged the Roosevelt presidency (he had been dead only eight years). But Borglum believed Roosevelt's vision of America's role in the world community qualified him for the fourth place on the mountain. Roosevelt had realized the dream of Christopher Columbus by completing the Panama Canal and connecting the waters of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. 

The only presidential selection to draw any measure of criticism was that of Theodore Roosevelt, the nation's 26th president. 

Some academics argued that history had not yet judged the Roosevelt presidency (he had been dead only eight years). But Borglum believed Roosevelt's vision of America's role in the world community qualified him for the fourth place on the mountain. Roosevelt had realized the dream of Christopher Columbus by completing the Panama Canal and connecting the waters of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. 

More significantly, Borglum identified with "T. R.'s" energy and charisma, and saw him as the epitome of the American spirit. Borglum sculpted Roosevelt from memory, as he and "Teddy" were close friends and confidants before, during and after Roosevelt's presidency.