Friday, August 17, 2012

On the Trail of the CCC

The sleepover seems to have gone well. At least, there were no calls in the middle of the night. I'll get the full report in a few hours.

And with that mini-adventure behind us, we may now return to our camping stories.

On the first morning of our expedition, we kissed Aunty M goodbye and headed west toward Western Maryland. It takes about an hour to reach the first ridges of the Appalachians and we stopped there at Gambrill State Park for a picnic lunch and Park Quest.

The quest was a short hike, collecting clues about the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). The CCC was one of the New Deal's most popular programs. It put young, unemployed men to work on various projects across the country.

In exchange for their labor, the men were provided shelter (often in army-style camps), food and the standard wage of $30/month with $25 going directly to the worker's family.

In the nine years the CCC operated (1933-1942), an estimated 3 billion trees were planted and 800 parks developed nationwide. A list of CCC contributions in just our tiny state of Maryland can be found here.

Many, if not most, of the parks I've detailed on this blog were built by the CCC.

Boys standing on one of three stone overlooks built by the CCC in Gambrill State Park.

I'm very grateful to those young men. They've left an amazing legacy.

Boys with the statue dedicated to Maryland's CCC workers.

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Sources and Additional Reading

Civilian Conservation Corps, American Experience, PBS

Civilian Conservation Corps, Roosevelt's Tree Army in Maryland, Maryland Department of Natural Resources

Civilian Conservation Corps, Wikipedia

Civilian Conservation Corps Legacy 

Gambrill State Park Civilian Conservation Corps

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