PORT CHESTER, N.Y. -- Port Chester residents will gather on Saturday, June 21 at 1:30 p.m., to unveil a memorial that honors one of their own, Luigi Del Bianco, a talented artist and immigrant who lived the American dream.
The unveiling will take place across the street from 68 North Regent St in a “pocket park“ where Elizabeth Street meets Webster Place.
Born in 1892, Del Bianco immigrated to the United States from the small town of Meduno, Italy, in 1920. He made Port Chester his home from 1920 until his death in 1969 at age 77.
A classically trained stone carver, Del Bianco was hired by Mount Rushmore designer Gutzon Borglum in 1933 to assist him in creating the “refinement of expression” in the faces of the four 60 foot granite faces. Borglum described Del Bianco as “the only intelligent, efficient stone carver on the work who understands the language of the sculptor.”
Unfortunately the book, "The Carving of Mount Rushmore," based on Borglum's papers has no mention of Del Bianco's contributions to Mount Rushmore. Del Bianco's son, Caesar, and grandson, Lou, were so perplexed by this glaring omission that they made four separate trips to the Library of Congress to research the Borglum papers. What they found were letters from Borglum praising “Bianco” and his vital importance to the work.
Now Lou Del Bianco is on a quest to get Mount Rushmore to formally recognize Luigi as the chief carver, a title the National Park Service refuses to give him even though the documentation is indisputable.
The popular TV show, "Cakeboss" honored Del Bianco with a Mount Rushmore cake in 2012. Watch the episode here.