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Civilian Conservation Corps Stories

West Cornwall Barracks

West Cornwall Barracks courtesy of Black Bass Antiques

Pres. Franklin D. Roosevelt established the Civilian Conservation Corps in 1933 to take unemployed men (ages 18-25) and have them work on building state parks, planting trees, building roads & bridges and fighting fires. Each camp had about 200 men who lived in barracks heated by wood or coal stoves. Army officers supervised the boys and they taught the importance of discipline and order. You can see some of the WW I clothing and boots near the cots. The boys signed up for a 6 month period and could resign if they didn't get a job. They could only work for  2 years.

West Cornwall Mess Hall

West Cornwall Mess Hall courtesy of Black Bass Antiques

Above is the mess hall where the CCC boys ate their meals. About six boys worked in the kitchen cooking and serving three meals a day. Most of the boys didn't eat lunch here because they were out working on projects. They got a bag lunch that contained two sandwiches (peanut butter and jelly the most popular) and a fruit. Supper was about 5 PM and they boys could eat all they wanted.

West Cornwall Rec Hall

West Cornwall Recreation Hall courtesy of Black Bass Antiques

After supper the boys had free time. Many went to the Recreation Hall to play ping pong or pool. Some relaxed and read by the fireplace while others played cards.  There was a canteen here where they could by cigarettes, candy, soda or toiletries. The boys were paid $30 a month but $25 went home to their parents. They received $5 spending money that had to last for the month.

Podskoch Press