Dakota Territory Times 2017 DTT 2017 - Page 4

Crazy Horse: ‘My lands are where my dead lie buried’ Page 4 • Dakota Territory Times • Summer 2017 Crazy Horse Memorial is the World’s Largest Mountain Carving in progress. Lo- cated in the Southern Black Hills, Crazy Horse Memorial is 17 miles from Mount Rushmore National Memorial and five miles north of Custer. The dream began in 1939 when Lakota chief Henry Standing Bear asked sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski to create a memorial to show that, “…the red man has great he- roes, also.” The memorial Ziolkowski cre- ated is a representation of the Lakota leader Crazy Horse riding his horse while pointing in the distance toward the sacred Black Hills declaring, “My lands are where my dead lie buried.” The official beginning of the massive carving took place June 3, 1948, with the first blast on the mountain. It was Zi- olkowski’s dream to create a memorial to honor Native Americans and that it would be carried out and completed by the Amer- ican people. To this day, the Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation does not accept gov- ernment funding. Work is continued through admission fees and private dona- tions. The early work on the mountain was done by Ziolkowski; his wife, Ruth; and their 10 children. After Ziolkowski’s pass- ing in 1982, the project was carried on by Ruth, who was responsible for the comple- tion of Crazy Horse’s face in 1998. She also expanded the Indian Museum of North America® and in 2010 started the Indian University of North America®, which is ac- credited by the University of South Dakota. Ruth passed away in 2014 and left the groundwork of the memorial for her chil- dren. They are continuing the dream shared by Standing Bear, Korczak and Ruth with the help of the Crazy Horse staff and the board of directors. Ziolkowski and Standing Bear designed the mountain carving to be the centerpiece of the greater goal – to bring education and cultural understanding among all people. There is no set completion date for the Me- morial, but it is set to also include a med- ical training center and an expansion to the Indian Museum of North America®. Once completed, the mountain carving will be 563 feet high and 641 feet wide. The head of Crazy Horse stands 87 feet high – by comparison, the heads carved at Mount Rushmore stand 60 feet high. The contin- ued focus points of the mountain carving are the hand, elbow, shoulder and hair of Crazy Horse himself and the horse’s mane. An expert mountain carving crew is remov- ing the rock in this area by hand, using spe- cialized tools due to the delicate nature of the area. Be sure to look for the dust plumes kicked up by the carving and drilling when you visit. Crazy Horse Memorial is open year- round and is located between Custer and Hill City on U.S. Highway 16/385. For more information, call (605) 673-4681 or visit their website at crazyhorsememor ial.org. Buffalo are very unpredictable and dangerous. Always view them from a distance. THE WORK CONTINUES — The view from the veranda at Crazy Horse Memorial in- cludes the 1/34th scale model with the mountain 3/4 mile in the background. [Photo courtesy Crazy Horse Memorial]