New York State Conservation Department Civilian Conservation Corps Camp and Personnel Files

Held by the New York State Archives

Overview

Arrangement

Administrative History

Scope and Content

Use of Records

Access Terms

Detailed Description


Overview of the Records

Repository:

New York State Archives

New York State Education Department

Cultural Education Center

Albany, NY 12230

Summary:
Following passage of the Emergency Conservation Work Act in 1933, the federal government recruited and trained unemployed men ages seventeen to twenty-eight to develop forest lands and parks. In New York, the program commonly and later officially known as the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) focused on recreation, fishery, forestry, and pest control projects. The series consists of correspondence, reports, work plans, general orders, work applications, and personnel files related to New York's CCC camps.
Creator:
New York (State). Conservation Dept.
Title:
Civilian Conservation Corps camp and personnel files
Quantity:
2.5 cubic feet, including approximately 700 cards
Inclusive Dates:
1933-1942
Series Number:
A3268

Arrangement

Paper files in this series are arranged by alpha-numerical camp code and chronologically therein. Central administrative files are arranged by document type and chronologically therein. The camp history card file is arranged by camp code and the personnel card file is arranged in two separate alphabetical sequences.

Administrative History

President Franklin Roosevelt's Emergency Conservation Work Act, designed to put unemployed men ages seventeen to twenty-eight to work developing forest lands and parks, was passed in March of 1933. Initially named Emergency Conservation Work (ECW), the program was commonly and later (1937) officially known as the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). The program was administered by the U.S. Army, the National Park Service, and the Federal Security Agency. Participants were trained at army camps and then transferred to work camps, which provided shelter, food, medical, religious, and educational services as well as employment. The CCC camps nationwide worked on projects in the areas of structural improvement; transportation; erosion control; flood control; forest culture; forest protection; landscape and recreation; and range, wildlife, and other projects.

The CCC camps operated from 1933 until July 1942, by which time mobilization for war had significantly reduced unemployment. At one point New York had 102 of the camps: 39 state forest work camps; 9 private land tent camps; 8 soil conservation service camps; 28 state park camps; 13 Corps of Engineers camps; and 5 military camps. The aggregate number of New York men employed in these camps was 220,752.

In New York, the major CCC projects focused on recreation, fishery, forestry, and pest control. The recreation projects included constructing foot, horse, and ski trails; camping, picnicking and caretaking facilities; and dams and bridges. Fishery projects included developing the Randolph Hatchery, building small dams and rock pools, and planting willows and shrubs along river embankments. Forestry projects aimed at constructing truck trails and lookout towers, and fighting fires. The pest control units treated white pine blister rust, Dutch Elm disease, and infestations of gypsy and brown moths.

Scope and Content Note

The series consists of correspondence, reports, work plans, general orders, work applications, and personnel files related to New York's Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camps. Card files, consisting of approximately 700 cards, include information on the history of the New York camps, as well as personal and job related data on applicants and camp workers. Also present are status and efficiency ratings forms on employees. The records were compiled by the State Conservation Department in its capacity as the agency responsible for state forests, water, and wildlife and thus for administering the CCC camps.

The first part of the series is composed of correspondence, reports, and project work plan sheets related to the CCC state forest camps located at Lake Clear Junction, Paul Smith's, Tupper Lake, Lake Placid, Benson Mines, and Plattsburg. The correspondence files contain information on camp projects, work plans, equipment orders, and personnel at the individual camps. The report files consist of monthly work summaries, monthly operating summaries, and progress reports. The project work plan sheets include project work plan forms and related correspondence. Detailed information on the work plan forms includes: date; camp number; number and name of project; number and name of work plan; location; description of project; and estimated budget.

A second section of the series consists of "Albany General Correspondence," general orders, and other administrative records. The general correspondence is with the Conservation Department in Albany regarding personnel and employment issues, financial matters, and camp project proposals. The general order files contain memoranda, orders, and regulations from the U.S. War Department and the Headquarters Second Corps Area in Governor's Island, New York, concerning the general administration of the CCC camps. Additional administrative records in this section document general camp operations and include records of equipment and materials purchases (1935); applications for work (1936); data and policy statements on construction of truck trails to fight fires, including location, mileage, trail barriers, and inspection assignments (1936-1937); and personnel handbook sheets (1935-1941).

One set of card files in the series records the history of ninety-three CCC camps in New York. Arranged by alpha-numeric camp code, the 3" x 5" cards include: camp code number and location; date established; names of property lessor and lessee; renewal data; termination or abandonment date; deposition (for example razed or salvaged); and conditions of lease.

An alphabetical personnel card file entitled "Men who worked or applied for work with CCC" includes about 600 4" x 6" cards. A notation makes a filing distinction between applicants and employees. "Applicants cards" list the name and address of the applicant; the camp's name; the position title and rate of pay; and sometimes a date of appointment. Typically some elements of information are missing in these cards and there are several cards at the end of the group that were apparently not processed. "Employees cards" list employee's name; camp name; date of appointment; position title; employee's address, education, age, marital status, and number of children; rate of pay; projects assigned; quality of work; conduct; promotion status; and number of relatives employed in federal service.

The final section of the series contains 5" x 8" "Status Record" and "Efficiency Rating Record" forms. There are two alphabetical sets of these forms, but the distinction between them is not known. The first set is incomplete; employees are listed only under letters D, F, G, H, K, L, M, P, R, S, and Z. The second set is clearly labeled "out of service." Forms in the two sets are identical, as is the typical final status information recorded (generally dismissed, resigned, transferred, or deceased). The status record forms provide each employee's title, grade, and salary as well as the forest or office, ranger district, and headquarters where the employee worked. The efficiency rating record forms include a proportionally weighted evaluation of the employee's grasp of instructions; neatness; industry; knowledge of work; judgment; personality; cooperativeness; and initiative. Disciplinary actions, if any, are noted on the forms as are post service records (which include date and cause of death) if available.

Use of Records

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions regarding access to or use of this series.

Available Alternate Formats

This series has been microfilmed on 8 rolls and is available for use onsite or through inter-library loan.

Access Terms

Corporate Name(s):

Civilian Conservation Corps (U.S.)

Geographic Name(s):

Paul Smiths (N.Y.)

Lake Placid (N.Y.)

Plattsburgh (N.Y.)

New York (State)

Tupper Lake (N.Y.)

Lake Clear Junction (N.Y.)

Adirondack Mountains (N.Y.)

Subject(s):

Forest roads--Design and construction

Forest conservation

Forest fires--Prevention and control

Forests and forestry--Economic aspects

Forestry projects--New York (State)

Foresters

Public service employment

Genre(s):

Personnel records

Card files

Reports

Function(s):

Managing government employees

Fire prevention

Detailed Description

Note: These records are held by the New York State Archives

Dates Contents Box Folder Roll
1935 Camp S-56 (Lake Clear Junction) Correspondence 1 1 1
1935 Camp S-63 (Tupper Lake) Reports 1 2 1
1935 Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Correspondence 1 3 1
1936 Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Correspondence 1 4 1
1939-1940 Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Correspondence 1 5 1
1941 Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Correspondence 1 6 1
1935 Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Reports 1 7 1
1936 Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Reports 1 8 1
1937 February-1938 June Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Project Work Plan Sheets 1 9 1
1937 July-1938 June Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Project Work Plan Sheets 1 10 1
1938-1940 Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Project Work Plan Sheets 1 11 1
1939-1940 Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Project Work Plan Sheets 1 12 2
1941 Camp S-60 (Paul Smith's) Comprehensive Fire Control Plan Project Sheets 1 13 2
1935 Camp S-63 (Tupper Lake) Correspondence 1 14 2
1936 Camp S-63 (Tupper Lake) Correspondence 1 15 2
1937 Camp S-63 (Tupper Lake) Correspondence 1 16 2
1935 Camp S-63 (Tupper Lake) Reports 1 17 2
1935 Camp S-71 (Lake Placid) Correspondence 1 18 2
1936 Camp S-71 (Lake Placid) Correspondence 1 19 2
1937 Camp S-71 (Lake Placid) Correspondence 1 20 3
1935-1936 Camp S-71 (Lake Placid) Equipment Reports and Work Plans 1 21 3
1936 Camp S-71 (Lake Placid) Reports 1 22 3
1937 July-1938 June Camp S-71 (Lake Placid) Project Work Plan Sheets 1 23 3
1936 Camp S-84 (Benson Mines) Correspondence 1 24 3
1936 Camp S-102 (Plattsburg) Correspondence 1 25 3
1937 Camp S-102 (Plattsburg) Correspondence 1 26 3
1940 Camp S-102 (Plattsburg) Correspondence 1 27 3
1940 November-1941 October Camp P-102 (Plattsburg) Project Work Plan Sheets 1 28 3
1941 March-May Camp P-102 (Plattsburg) Project Work Plan Sheets 1 29 3
1940 Camp S-138 (Lake Placid) Correspondence 1 30 3
1941 Camp S-138 (Lake Placid) Correspondence 1 31 3
1940 Camp S-138 (Lake Placid) Project Work Plan Sheets 1 32 3
1933-1936 Albany General Correspondence 1 33 3
1934 December-1935 December Albany General Correspondence 1 34 4
1937 Albany General Correspondence 1 35 4
1939-1940 Albany General Correspondence 1 36 4
1939 December-1941 November Albany General Correspondence 1 37 4
1941 December-1942 March Albany General Correspondence 1 38 4
1935 August-December General Orders 1 39 4
1935 June-August General Orders 1 40 4
1935 January-May General Orders 1 41 5
1936 June-December General Orders 2 1 5
1936 January-June General Orders 2 2 5
1936 January-1937 December General Orders 2 3 5
1940 January-November General Orders 2 4 5
1941 January-December General Orders 2 5 6
1941 December-1942 April General Orders 2 6 6
1935 Equipment and Material Turned Over to Camps 2 7 6
1936 Applications for Work 2 8 6
1936-1937 State Forest Preserve Truck Trails Data 2 9 6
1935-1941 Amended Handbook Sheets [1 of 2] 2 10 6
1935-1941 Amended Handbook Sheets [2 of 2] 2 11 6
1941 Amended Handbook Sheets 2 12 6
Camp History Card File 2 6
Applicants Card File 2 6
Employees Card File 2 6-7
Employee Status and Efficiency Ratings Records, D-Z and A-M 3 7-8
Employee Status and Efficiency Ratings Records, N-Z 4 8