Mount Rushmore | Photo Dissection of President Lincoln’s Head

As I was going through a bunch of my photos in my Lightroom catalog, I ran across photos from a trip through South Dakota. We stopped at Mount Rushmore National Memorial near Rapid City, South Dakota. As I viewed the many photos I took of the Presidents carved into the mountain, a close up photo of Lincoln’s head caught my attention. I noticed the amazing stone work detail that you could see when this photo was viewed at a 100% crop. So I decided to share it with you.

Lincoln’s nose has a large crack in it. There is an electronic sensor pinned to his nose which can be seen in the images below. It is called a rock block monitor  and you can also see the wire that runs from the sensor, up the side of his nose, across his forehead and up into his hair. This rock block monitor is helping the park department to see if the crack is getting any worse but are very confident that there is not any threat of his nose falling off. This isn’t the only sensor monitoring the monument. In 1999 RE/SPEC, a Rapid City engineering firm, installed concealed sensors at various places on the granite surface. The sensors measure the normal expansion and contraction of the rock as it responds to the heat and cold of day and night, winter and summer. Movements range from 1/500th to 1/1,000th of an inch – no threat to the integrity of a 60-foot-tall mountain carving. But by building a long-term record of the natural rock movement, the National Park Service will be able to detect and respond to unnatural movements if they ever occur.  You can see the monitor on Lincoln’s nose because of the angle and location I took the photo. This monitor is hidden from most other locations that you can photograph Mount Rushmore.

Mount Rushmore – Washington and Lincoln – Lens at 40mm

 

Mount Rushmore – Lincoln’s Head – Lens at 105mm
All Images Below are 100% Crop from This Photo

 

Lincoln’s Right Eye with Nose Sensor in View

 

Lincoln’s Left Eye

 

Stone Drill and Tool Marks Next to Virgin Stone

 

Lincoln’s Face – Crack Monitoring Sensor and Wire

 

Stone and Rock Debris with Tooling Marks Below Lincoln

 

View on Entire Crack Monitoring System on Lincoln’s Nose

 

Close-up of Lincoln’s Face – Note Tooling Marks and Sealed Cracks

 

Bottom of Lincoln’s Face Along with Rock and Stone Debris

 

Contrast of Three Surfaces – Fine Sculpted Rock Face, Rough Cut Rock Face, and Untouched Stone

 

 

I love sharing my photos with you and your likes and shares are what helps me.

I hope you enjoyed it, comment below and let me know!

 

 

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  • Michael Bess via Facebook - July 8, 2012 - 8:47 pm

    really nice pictures! Thanks for sharing. Went to Mount Rushmore this year, did not have the time to walk the pth to get up close to the Presidents. This breakdown was nice to see.ReplyCancel

  • Rick Mills - July 8, 2012 - 9:50 pm

    I go to work past the faces most every day, and I hadn’t noticed this! Good shooting on this, and as usual. I still have your lightning/C&NW units image as a screensaver…ReplyCancel

  • Glenda Williamson - July 8, 2012 - 10:05 pm

    I LIVE NOT FAR FROM HERE AND HAVE NEVER NOTICED IT EITHER! I WILL BE LOOKING NOW THOUGH. VERY INTERESTING ARTICLE AND AWESOME PICTURES! THANK YOU…ReplyCancel

  • Daniel Karst - August 28, 2013 - 6:54 pm

    The making of Mick Jaegar. Keep on Rockin’ in the Free World! LOLReplyCancel

  • casey.courtright - November 24, 2014 - 8:59 am

    I just wanted to know if there is a tunnel to look out of any president’s eye.?ReplyCancel

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