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St. Charles in Bear Lake County, Idaho — The American West (Mountains)
 

Gutzon Borglum Monument

 
 
Gutzon Borglum Monument, dedication plaque image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 21, 2017
1. Gutzon Borglum Monument, dedication plaque
Inscription.
Erected in Honor of
Gutzon Borglum
Born in the village of St. Charles
Idaho, March 25, 1867
He is internationally known for
his painting and sculptoring
and most famous for Mount
Rushmore National Monument


Gutzon Borglum: the artist and the man

In the winter of 1866-67, Danish Mormon emigrants Jens and Ida Borglum were traveling west when bad weather forced them to take refuge in a one-room cabin. In March, baby Gutzon arrived ahead of the spring thaw, giving St. Charles the right to claim the future sculptor as a native son. The Borglum family moved to Utah, then to the Midwest when Gutzon was a young child. At an early age, Gutzon knew he wanted to be an artist and the young man moved to California for art school.

A humble beginning
In a 1921 letter to Miss Douglas Hilts, County Superintendent in Gooding, ID, Gutzon stated, "They (his parents) told me...I was born west of Bear Lake, up in the mountains. My memory is that it was about 7,000 feet above sea level; and that they were caught there by winter weather and spent the winter in a log or sod cabin..."

Husband and father
In 1889, Gutzon married his first wife, painter Lisa Putnam, in Los Angeles. The couple traveled in Europe
Gutzon Borglum: the artist and the man Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 21, 2017
2. Gutzon Borglum: the artist and the man Marker
Captions: (top left) Th1s cabin near St. Charles is the birthplace of Gutzon Borglum.; (bottom left) Gutzon Borglum at the White House.; (center) Lincoln Borglum was a teenager when he first visited Mount Rushmore.; (bottom center) Lincoln came of age as a man and an artist while working side by side with is father on the project.; (upper left) Young Gutzon (seated at far right) with his father and siblings.; (sidebar on right) Gutzon Borglum's Wars of America, a bronze sculpture of 42 humans and two horses, was erected in New Jersey to honor all of America's war dead. Gutzon cast himself and his son Lincoln in the sculpture.
where they socialized with artists and heads of state. They had no children and the marriage ended in divorce.
Gutzon married Mary Montgomery in 1909. They settled on a farm in Connecticut and had two children, James Lincoln (1912-1986) and Mary Ellis (1916-2002).

A family passion
Gutzon, his brother Solon and their half brothers and sisters all showed a talent for art, but only Gutzon and Solon became world-renowned sculptors. Horses were favorite subjects of the brothers.
Gutzon's son, Lincoln, inherited his father's passion and completed the work on Mount Rushmore after his father's death.

(sidebar on right:)
A talented sculptor, Gutzon earned a national reputation for his colossal works in stone, bronze, and metal. His skill in handling monumental works remains a lasting legacy in American art.

A man with monumental talent

"A monument's dimensions should be determined by the importance to civilization of the events commemorated..." - Gutzon Borglum

Gutzon Borglum (1867-1941) was a prolific American painter and sculptor of stone and bronze with a talent for creating large-scale public monuments. Borglum is best known for designing the massive memorial to Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln on Mount Rushmore in South
A man with monumental talent Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 21, 2017
3. A man with monumental talent Marker
Captions: (bottom center) Mount Rushmore. Insert photos: Borglum working on scale models of Mount Rushmore and the monument in progress.; (upper left) Suspended from a harness, Gutzon Borglum inspects Washington's 60-foot face. Innovative dynamite techniques were used for 90% of the sculpting. Lincoln's ties to the monument continued long after Gutzon's death.; (sidebar on left) (top) Aviator: Gutzon Borglum with a model of Aviator. The piece is a memorial to James McConnel, the fist University of Virginia student to die serving in World War I. (middle) General Philip H. Sheridan: Borglum won major acclaim with his famous equestrian stature. President Theodore Roosevelt spoke axis dedication in 1908. (bottom) Seated Lincoln: One of Borglum's most beloved works, this sculpture is placed low to the ground to invite access. (Dedicated in 1911, Newark, NJ) A replica (below) was placed in Boise's Julia Davis Park in 2010.
Dakota. The artist felt that these four great men epitomized America's spirit and ideals.

"These records will endure until the wind and the rain alone shall wear them away." Gutzon Borglum

A creative career
Many of his sculptures were of civilian and military figures and horses. President Abraham Lincoln was also a favorite subject. The sculptures at he left (sidebar on left) are some of Borglum's more famous works.

Father and son
Gutzon was 60 years old in 1927 when he began the task that his son, Lincoln, would complete several months after his death in 1941. Much of the work was done during the Great Depression, offering some 400 laborers a paycheck and a chance to be part of history. Lincoln began working on his father's crew for no pay. By 1937, he functioned as the project sculptor in his father's absence. In 1938, he was promoted to project superintendent.
Lincoln oversaw the monument's completion after Gutzon's death and served as the first superintendent of the Mount Rushmore National Memorial (1941-1944)
 
Erected by America's Byways.
 
Location. 42° 6.738′ N, 111° 23.352′ W. Marker is in St. Charles, Idaho, in Bear Lake County. Marker is on North Main Street (U.S. 89) near Center
Mount Rushmore National Monument image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 21, 2017
4. Mount Rushmore National Monument
"The purpose of the memorial is to communicate the founding, expansion, preservation and unification of the United States with colossal statues of Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt."

Gutzon Borglum (1867-1941) created the design and helped carve the four presidents in the grant cliffs of South Dakota between 1927 and 1941. Mount Rushmore was Borglum's last project after a lifetime dedicated to art. His son Lincoln Borglum (1912-1986) completed the 60 foot high faces in October 1941. This replica, here at his St. Charles birthplace, serves as a tribute to Gutzon Borglum and his legacy of work across America.
Street, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 45 North Main Street, Saint Charles ID 83272, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 8 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. St. Charles (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); British Settlers (approx. 5 miles away); Bear Lake (approx. 5.7 miles away); Thomas Sleight Cabin (approx. 7.7 miles away); Our First Church (approx. 7.8 miles away); Paris (approx. 7.8 miles away); Charles Coulson Rich (approx. 7.9 miles away); Paris Tabernacle (approx. 7.9 miles away).
 
Also see . . .  Gutzon Borglum (1867-1941) Sculptor of Mount Rushmore -- Forgotten Newsmakers. Borglum is responsible for creating the model and picking the site for the carving. During the sculpting he was often more supervisory than hands-on. He would climb all over the mountain to find the best angle for the features of each bust, often insisting on the accuracy of details that could not be seen from ground level. (Submitted on July 20, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.) 
 
Categories. Arts, Letters, MusicLandmarksMan-Made Features
 
Gutzon Borglum Monument image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, June 21, 2017
5. Gutzon Borglum Monument
Gutzon Borglum image. Click for full size.
By Smithsonian
6. Gutzon Borglum
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 20, 2017. This page originally submitted on July 20, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 183 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on July 20, 2017, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.
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