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. The Borglum family
chose San Antonio as their winter home.
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 mockup 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.