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Dwight Eisenhower at Mount Rushmore - June 11, 1953
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President Dwight Eisenhower

On June 11, 1953, President Dwight Eisenhower became the first U.S. President to arrive in South Dakota by air. Eisenhower came to the state to address delegates attending a Young Republicans League convention in Rapid City.

President Eisenhower addressed the delegates at a gathering at Mount Rushmore. In the clip below, Eisenhower is seen speaking and mixing with crowd. There are also shots of Eisenhower fishing, most likely in a stream in Custer State Park. The film is silent. A transcript of the speech is available online here.

For Teachers: Activity idea is available at SDPB's Digital Learning Library.

For more information about presidential visits to South Dakota, visit the South Dakota State Historical Society Press Web site and view or download "Patriotic Pageantry: Presidential Visits to South Dakota" by Harold H. Schuler.