Monumental memorial to crazy horse
Did you guys know that the second-largest monument in the world is being built nearby Mount Rushmore in the Black Hills of South Dakota? The Crazy Horse Monument has been under construction for more than 70 years on the Lakota tribe’s hallowed territory. Although it is still far from finished, this enormous memorial to the famed 19th Oglala Lakota chief already makes a dramatic impression.
For the Lakota, Crazy Horse is a key person because he stood up to the American government to stop white settlers from intruding on Native American territory and endangering their style of living. Although he was in charge of multiple fights, his success at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend in 1876 is what made him most famous. In what is frequently referred to as Custer’s Last Stand, the united armies of the Lakota, Northern Cheyenne, and Arapaho nations destroyed the American Army.
The Crazy Horse Statue’s lengthy history dates back to the 1930s, when a particular Lakota chief first asked for it to be built. When Henry Standing Bear decided to create a monument in Crazy Horse’s honour, he was an Oglala Lakota king and a well-liked local authority. Henry Standing Bear believed that it was unfair that the legendary Native American leader was left out of Mount Rushmore at the time it was being built. He repeatedly pleaded with the artist who carved Mount Rushmore, Gutzon Borglum, but to no effect. Nevertheless, he persisted.
He wrote the Polish-American artist Korczak Ziolkowski in 1939. Ziolkowski had a short stint working on Mountains under Borglum and was fascinated by the undertaking. The project started after Henry Standing Bear agreed to swap the state all 900 hectares of his land in order to get access to the hill. The artist started his work in 1948 but rejected any government financing because he was wary of outside assistance. He therefore worked alone, without reliable electricity, water, or roadways, to carry out his goal. He utilised a 741-step wooden stairway to get to the top. He was, nevertheless, unmoved.
Ziolkowski was mistaken when he estimated that the operation would take around 30 years. According to the design, Crazy Horse should be mounted and facing forward towards a location where numerous Native Americans are interred. And before his away in 1982 at the age of 74, he worked tirelessly on the granite to realise his goal. Ruth Ziolkowski, his wife, then oversaw the undertaking. She made a few minor adjustments to the initial ideas, like modeling Crazy Horse’s face first than horse as Ziolkowski had intended. She correctly predicted that completing the face would boost tourism and that these admission costs could aid in financing the undertaking.
The statue was completed at this time with assistance from seven of Ziolkowski’s kids, and Crazy Horse’s face was unveiled in 1998. Naturally, this is a caricature of Crazy Horse rather than an authentic portrayal of the legendary figure who was notorious for declining to pose for photographs. Crazy Horse’s head stands 87 feet tall, dwarfing the 60-foot paintings on Mount Rushmore. When completed, it will be the second-largest statue in the world, trailing only India’s Statue of Peace.
Monique Ziolkowski, an artist, is the current head of the nonprofit Crazy Horse Monument Fund. She is Ziolkowski’s child. She assumed over after Ruth passed away in 2014. Along with her, three of Ziolkowski’s sons and three of his grandchildren are employed there. The project has grown to include a University of South Dakota satellite campus that serves as a hub for learning and culture. They accompany the welcome center and are called as the Indian University of North America and the Indian Gallery of North America.
On the other hand, there are some issues with the Crazy Horse Monument. Many of Crazy Horse’s kin have opposed the installation, claiming that Henry Standing Bear did not seek their input before ordering the work. Additionally, some locals claim that Crazy Horse wouldn’t be at ease with the massive monument given his modesty. Others believe that the monument has shifted from being about Crazy Horse and his memory to being more about the artist and his family.
Whatever your opinion, though, there is no doubting the immense impact of the tale that led to the building of the monument.
It has taken more than 70 years to build the Crazy Horse Monument, which is embedded in the South Dakotan Black Hills.
A prototype of the intended artwork is shown here: