Does the Mount Rushmore Crew Live On?


On October 4, 1927, Danish-American sculptor Gutzon Borglum began work on the Mount Rushmore monument. It took Gutzon, son Lincoln, and over 400 workers 14 years to chisel four U.S. presidents from stone, and now three million tourists visit the site each year (when there’s not a government shutdown, that is). Legend has it that some Mount Rushmore workers are so proud of their achievement that they rise from the grave to keep an eye on it.

While no men died during the Rushmore project, some, like chief stone carver Luigi Del Bianco, succumbed to silicosis, a condition caused by prolonged exposure to silica dust. NPR reports that many in the Rushmore crew did not wear protective masks because they found them too hot and uncomfortable.

Keystone Cemetery in Keystone, SD boasts a stunning view of Mount Rushmore and is the final resting place of many Rushmore workers. Examiner’s Debe Branning reports that cemetery visitors have seen wispy white figures walking among the trees. The cemetery is so active, in fact, that it’s listed among the 100 Most Haunted Cemeteries in America (though it’s unclear who’s behind the rankings). One woman told the Rapid City Journal that she encountered a growling black entity while touring the cemetery at night.

If the Rushmore story is true, it’s a wonder more famous monuments aren’t haunted. Or perhaps they are…