Mount Rushmore, which is found in the Black Hills of South Dakota, was once just a towering granite cliff. In 1924, Doane Robinson, secretary of the South Dakota Historical Society, suggested carving famous Wild West figures out of the mountain to draw tourists to the area. Sculptor John Gutzon de la Mothe Borglum was hired for the job. In the end, Borglum sculpted George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt instead. The project took fourteen years to complete. Millions of people still visit Mount Rushmore every year to pay tribute to four of our most influential presidents.
To learn more, head over to PBS Learning Media and join Wilson and Ditch in South Dakota.
During the Revolutionary War, the Continental Congress met in Philadelphia. After the war, the capitol was moved to Washington D.C. In 1791, President George Washington chose a site for the new capitol building, now known as Capitol Hill.
Work on the new capitol building began on September 18, 1793. The trowel George Washington used to lay the cornerstone for the capitol was also used to lay the cornerstone for the Washington Memorial. Work on the building was slow. In 1814, the building was set ablaze as British armies marched on Washington D.C. A rainstorm doused the flames before the building was completely ruined. Construction continued after the war, and finally, in 1829 the building was complete.
Congress soon outgrew the building and new construction began to enlarge it. During the Civil War, the Capitol served as a hospital, bakery, and army barracks. Construction was finally completed in 1870.
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