Excerpt from the report
Excerpt from the Introduction
Consideration of the Memorial's cultural resources has been minimal. Some
of the tools and other equipment used during carving of the sculptures are
preserved and displayed for public enjoyment. However, the Memorial's
archeological potential has never been explored. Other than the general
story that the Black Hills Paha Sapa (Brown 1970: 277) orHé Sápa(Howard 1972:302), were sacred to various
historic Indian groups, aboriginal culture has not been considered at Mount
Rushmore National Memorial.
In 1938 the Memorial became a Park Service historic area. After the
National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, it was listed on the
National Register of Historic Places.
Anticipatory to America's bicentennial celebration, Mount Rushmore was
slated for special development. Improvements were to center on expansion
of the transportation system. Construction of two staging areas (parking
lots) outside the Memorial and development of mass-transit facilities to
area headquarters were planned. Visitor use of the area is already at
capacity, and bicentennial celebration is expected to augment current
tourism. As a result, park planners believed that some means of coping
with increased visitation was essential.
In conjunction with proposed construction plans, archeological survey of
all areas subject to disturbance outside the Memorial was programmed.
Cultural resource inventory and evaluation was also planned for Memorial
lands. Because Mount Rushmore is listed on the National Register of
Historic Places the effects of all proposed improvements on the area's
cultural resources must be assessed (1966 National Historic Preservation
However, just before the archeological survey began, Mount Rushmore was
deleted as a bicentennial area and plans for development outside the
Memorial were dropped. Therefore, the site survey and cultural resource
evaluation were restricted to lands within the Memorial.
Due to the sensitive nature
of this subject this report is
available to professional
archeologists only. If you
order this manuscript we may
contact you for verification of