1998 Mount Rushmore
International Writing Contest
Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt and Lincoln:
Presidents with Visions for America

If they could speak today,
what might they say?

First Prize: Teenagers
Austin O'Malley
Homeschool: Teacher: Linda O'Malley
St. Paul, Minnesota

Lincoln: "I am Proud"

I am Lincoln.
I am the glue that held
us together
when the Civil War
stormed through.
I kept spirits up
when brothers fought brothers
and our nation was threatened
to become torn.

Today, as I peer out at the modern world
from under my top hat,
I smile.
I smile because I am proud.
Proud at the fact that my country survived. It
lived through the World Wars,
the struggle with Communism,
the Middle Eastern crisis.
My country sent the first astronaut
to the moon, and the first diver
to the bottom
of the sea.
It has spawned thousand of artists
and poets,
who have added
to the world's collection of
drawings and verse.
As the first democracy, it has set
a standard for others
and has lived up to its reputation through
two centuries.
There were times when it looked like we as a nation might fall,
but we picked ourselves back up,
and continued on the journey
that started when thirteen colonies
declared independence,
and now have become a mighty nation,
whose flag is a symbol
of hope,
and peace,
and freedom,
for all.