Mountain Update October 17, 2016

This #MountainMonday is the first in our Meet the Crew Series in which every few weeks we would like to introduce you to a Member of the Crazy Horse Mountain Crew. We welcome you to read on and learn more about Mountain Crew Member Jeff H.

Jeff began his work at Crazy Horse while Korczak was still carving the Mountain, 37 years ago. “The first day Korczak literally took me out on the arm in his blue pickup and told me his Dream.” Jeff said speaking fondly of his conversations with Korczak.

Jeff works on the Mountain, proficient with all of the equipment and processes from driving heavy machinery to blasting to rope techniques and safety. “I love coming to work” Jeff explains his statement as he describes peace and serenity in the actual transit to his “office” before the equipment is started, when the wind tends to be calm, and wildlife can be seen. He also enjoys the people that he works with at Crazy Horse stating “The people that are here make you walk a little bit taller too, because there are great people here.”

On a more technical level, Jeff finds enjoyment in the fact that his job combines art and science, such as the art of carving a Mountain with the science of blasting.
Growing up in Illinois, the phrase “Go West, young man” defined Jeff at a young age as he always wanted to make his home there. Driven by that desire, destiny brought him to Crazy Horse. “It just fits me” he said. Jeff encourages people to put the Black Hills on their bucket list - not only as a gateway to the West, but as a destination, with Crazy Horse being a highlight of the visit.

In his time away from work, Jeff is active and enjoys the outdoors taking part in skiing, camping, mountain biking and more. Never tiring of the Black Hills he makes the most of the beauty and recreation available to him here. Jeff also enjoys traveling to see new things as well as visiting family.

“I could go on, and on, and on” he said while speaking of his history at Crazy Horse Memorial. It comes as no surprise he has many great stories considering he has been part of the Carving Crew through many phases of the sculpture in progress, including completion of Crazy Horse’s Face.
We hope you enjoyed learning a little more about Jeff, a dedicated Carver and longtime Member of the Crazy Horse Mountain Crew.

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  • “No one is ever wrong who desires to do that which is not required of them to do — and that which is of a noble purpose. The purpose of Crazy Horse is noble.”
    Korczak Ziolkowski / Sculptor
  • “My fellow chiefs and I would like the white man to know that the red man has great heroes also.”
    Chief Henry Standing Bear
  • “When the legends die, the dreams end. When the dreams end, there is no more greatness.”
    Korczak Ziolkowski / Sculptor
  • “The Important thing is that we never stop. That’s the main thing. And if you looked at it as strictly a view of being finished, you could get awfully distracted waiting for that day to come. This way, you’re pleased with every little step of progress that you make.”
    Ruth Ziolkowski / Sculptor's Wife
  • “One does not sell the earth upon which the people walk.”
    Crazy Horse
  • “By carving Crazy Horse, if I can give back to the Indian some of his pride and create a means to keep alive his culture and heritage, my life will have been worthwile.”
    Korczak Ziolkowski / Sculptor
  • “He left everything so we can carry on his work, and that’s just what we’re going to do. We’re dedicated to that. His whole life would be wasted if the mountain carving and the humanitarian goals are not completed.”
    Ruth Ziolkowski / Sculptor's Wife
  • “My lands are where my dead lie buried.”
    Crazy Horse
  • “If it weren’t for each and every one you, whether your gift was small or large monetarily, whether it was friendship and encouragement, without you we wouldn’t be here…”
    Ruth Ziolkowski / Sculptor's Wife
  • “Standing Bear explained that the Indian has a concept of honoring their great heroes that’s totally different from the white man’s. It was difficult for me to understand at first…The Indian uses the direct approach. He says: that man was my ancestor, and he was a great man, so we should honor him-I would not lie or cheat because I am his blood”
    Korczak Ziolkowski / Sculptor

Crazy Horse Memorial
12151 Avenue of the Chiefs
Crazy Horse, SD 57730-8900

(605) 673-4681


Upcoming Events

  • Memorial Weekend
    May 25-28

    Memorial Weekend <br />May 26-29,<br /> 2017
    Native American’s across this great nation have served and sacrificed in the United States Military, join us to honor all fallen heroes who fought and protected our freedom. American Indian artists will be featured throughout the Welcome Center. Admission to the Memorial will be waived with 3 cans of food per person.
  • Legends in Light
    May 25-Sep 30

    Legends in Light<br /> May 26-Oct 1<br />
    This spectacular light show tells the story of the Memorial in laser lights projected onto the Mountain. You will be treated to the story of Chief Henry Standing Bear’s invitation to Korczak, Ruth’s contributions and special features of many Native American heroes. This must see show is featured nightly at dark, for sun down times click here:
  • Native Americans’Day
    Oct 8

    Native Americans’ Day  Oct 10, 2016
    Governor George S. Mickelson and the SD legislature declared 1990 as the “Year of Reconciliation”, the day formerly known as Columbus Day became Native American Day. Native American Day at Crazy Horse Memorial is celebrated by planned activities for kids, program and performers, Educator of the Year is awarded and (weather permitting) a mountain blast. Admission is waved to the Memorial with 3 cans of food per person.