It took around 14 years to build the four, gigantic presidential faces, with work beginning in 1927 and finishing in 1941. Great chunks of rock were blasted away with explosives, then the striking likenesses were carved out with chisels and jackhammers. This photo was taken circa 1940, towards the end of construction: you can clearly see the sage profiles of Thomas Jefferson and George Washington a little farther away. However, the site is controversial. The Black Hills is sacred ground for indigenous people and this area was taken from them by the government after a series of bloody battles.