Mount Rushmore Independence 2001 Results

Inspired by Mt. Rushmore National Memorial
The Contest
Washington, Jefferson, T. Roosevelt and Lincoln
Presidents with Visions for America ...and the World
If they could speak about independence on Independence Day 2001,
what would they say?

Choose one president, and in 75 words or fewer, prose and/or poetry, enter the words as though the President were speaking.
The Contest closed Oct. 31, 2001.

Thanks to all who entered.
From many good entries, we announce the following winners.



"Walk softly and carry a big stick... but who is left to hit with it? America, you've done well in severing all oppressive ties. Your citizens are free, your economy is sound, and your diplomatic relations... well, in light of recent events I'd recommend a bigger stick."

"What makes me most proud of this country is that although independence is ensured here, Americans have enough generosity to bring that light of independence to nations abroad."

Katie Allen, Bay Port High School, Green Bay, WI. 12th Grade
Mt. Rushmore Silver Dollar

The following seven entries each win
a Mt. Rushmore 50th Anniversary Commemorative Postage Stamp Poster


I look at our country, my God! It has grown,
More glory and fame than any king could ever own.

The thirteen colonies gathered on this day,
What we thought would happen was just child's play.

We envisioned thirteen, but now there are fifty,
Opening our borders, the states gathered swiftly.

Year after year... decades fly by,
But we will always celebrate the Fourth of July.

Katy Moore, Shamrock Middle School, Decatur, GA, 8th Grade



Freedom can be experienced by any person at any time. It is a state of mind and spirit. Independence, however, is a condition for which one must toil and sweat without ceasing against the evils that threaten it. The fight to gain independence is only the beginning battle of an ongoing war. Once obtained, independence must be nurtured and protected like a newborn child, for it is defenseless when left to its own accord.

Crystal Anne Sliva, Pasadena, Texas


Independence, oh what a gift from the Spirit above,
Bestowed on one nation abounding from the patriot's love
Of country and the freedom to choose --
A delicate balance, if unsteadied, the citizen could lose.

Oh yeoman, collect all your strength and bear
Independence's ever-burdensome plow,
For true freedom's a boundless responsibility,
Ever calling on the conscience and the sweat of one's brow.

Jane Snipes, Pickerington, Ohio


I, Thomas Jefferson, happily look
At my nation in its time of joy
Independence, this Fourth of July
Reminds me of my days as a boy
I remember when the British came
But we turned them back
Their redcoats dying on the horizon
Patriots hot on their track
Now we are one nation, united
Freedom our greatest pride
We can celebrate and do what we want
Without having to turn and hide

Noah Gregory, Shamrock Middle School, Decatur, GA, 8th Grade



Since before we all were born,
Nations have been scarred and torn,
Tearing up from the inside out,
Some never knowing what it all was about,
Long ago that happened to us,
So many bad things, and one big plus,
So on this day of truth and glory,
Remember that war that was so gory,
But taught us all that freedom's right,
A hopeful beacon, shining bright.

Laura Usselman, Shamrock Middle School, Decatur, GA, 8th Grade


"The idea of freedom is not based on the degree of freedom or the number of liberties that an individual enjoys in a particular society, but on the degree of equality that exists among its citizens. Any difference in the amount of privileges and rights can become the cause of social injustice, and oppression."

Jennifer Gutierrez, New York University, Sophomore. New York, NY



America has changed ever since its existence. It's tolerance for change has led to diversity, and diversity has made America stronger. But one thing that has not changed is America's freedom. For this was a free country, is a free country, and will always be a free country. We will defend our freedom and our liberty at all cost.

Walter Bergeson, Shamrock Middle School, Decatur, GA, 8th Grade