The beloved Old Man of the Mountain formation collapsed on May 3, 2003 between midnight and 2am. People left flowers at the base in tribute. Unfortunately we never got to see the Old Man Of the Mountain. While in New Hampshire I read a pamphlet that said it was opened – we were a bit confused. Not sure of what to expected we ventured out to the site that ended up being a wonderful memorial created by Friends of the Old Man of the Mountain. Also refer to the following links for more information on this beautiful piece of history. Click here and here.
You might be wondering what happened to make this rock formation collapse. The cause is due to freezing and thawing resulting in structural damage that weakened the rock formation over many decades. In the 1920’s the crack in the forehead was large enough for it to be mended with chains. In 1957 $25,000 was allocated for further repairs. Over the years different people have been in charge in maintaining this historical site. We had to wonder if perhaps people tried to over-engineer the fixes. I guess we will never know!
In 1955 a U.S. stamp was issued with Old Man of the Mountain on the stamp. The below pictures from the memorial plaza shows how you can view the Old Man through a special viewer to see how the Old Man looked. It is a nice plaza with memorial stones, benches, and a beautiful lake.
The Old Man was famous largely because of statesman Daniel Webster, a New Hampshire native, who once wrote: “Men hang out their signs indicative of their respective trades; shoe makers hang out a gigantic shoe; jewelers a monster watch, and the dentist hangs out a gold tooth; but up in the Mountains of New Hampshire, God Almighty has hung out a sign to show that there He makes men.”
There was also a beautiful lake called “Profile Lake” that has a rich history. It was a peaceful place.