Researching Civilian Conservation Corps Relatives

Interested in researching Civilian Conservation Corps relatives?

Try the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Enrollee Records at the National Archives.

The CCC provided jobs for young men, while improving and conserving U.S. open space and parklands. The program also relieved financially stressed families of the care of some of their children, while keeping these children out of a rootless existence on the road and in hobo camps during the Great Depression in the United States, An additional unforeseen benefit was preparedness for a generation of young men about to fight in World War II.

Researching Civilian Conservation Corps Relatives

Poster by Albert M. Bender, Illinois WPA Art Project Chicago (1935) (Courtesy Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division #ppmsca.12896)

The young men of the CCC provided unskilled manual labor for natural resources projects on federal, state and local government land. Enrollees worked 40 hours a week over five days, sometimes including Saturdays. In return they received $30 a month – with $22–25 sent to their families – as well as food, clothing, and medical care.

In 1933, FDR issued an executive order expanding the CCC program to admit veterans. Veteran enrollees could be any age, married or single, if they needed work. These men received additional pay – ranging from $36 to $45 per month – depending on their rating.

The CCC became the most popular of all the New Deal programs with the public. CCC participants improved physical condition, learned job skills, and increased employability. The CCC also helped U.S. citizens understand and appreciate their nation’s vast parks and other natural resources.

Enrollees planted nearly 3 billion trees to help reforest America; constructed trails, lodges and related facilities in more than 800 parks nationwide; and upgraded most state parks, updated forest fire fighting method; and built a network of service buildings and public roadways in remote areas.

Resources on Civilian Conservation Corps Relatives

1. Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Enrollee Records, National Archives

Located at the regional National Archives in St. Louis, available only by by written request.

Click this link to download the request form and instructions here.

The retrieval and copying of the records are fee-based:

5 pages or less: $25 flat fee
6 pages or more: $70 flat fee

2. Motion Pictures, Photographs, and Additional CCC Records at NARA

Additional records, both images and documents relating to the organization and operations of the CCC, area camp reports, and project documentation are available at several NARA sites. Click here to see other holdings via ARC, the National Archives’ online catalog.

Researching Civilian Conservation Corps Relatives

Johnny Ryan, F. Lemley, unknown, 1937, working in the Sierra National Forest. (Courtesy ccclegacy.org Archive #10-LF-CLC-6232)

3. Civilian Conservation Corps Legacy Website

3. American Experience PBS series Civilian Conservation Corps Documentary

4. The Civilian Conservation Corps: The History of the New Deal’s Famous Jobs Program During the Great Depression

What did you find researching Civilian Conservation Corps relatives? Let me know.

6 Comments

  1. Michael 29 April 2017 at 8:51 AM - Reply

    I was just in Shenandoah National Park a few weeks ago, and saw commemorative plaques for the CCC crews that originally created and maintained the areas that eventually became the larger park. Glad to learn these records exist!

    • Nancy Loe 12 February 2018 at 8:50 PM - Reply

      The work they did is incredible. Go to enough parks and you can pick out a CCC bridge without even trying.

  2. Rick Gleason 25 April 2017 at 8:44 PM - Reply

    Great information! I have an uncle I was very close to who was in the CCC. Signing on among his best decisiins.

    It hadn’t even occurred to me to research this aspect of his life… until now.

    Thank you!

    • Nancy 26 April 2017 at 3:36 PM - Reply

      I hope you find some great info, Rick.

  3. Jose 20 April 2017 at 1:24 PM - Reply

    Interesting information. Thank you for posting.

    • Nancy 20 April 2017 at 1:32 PM - Reply

      Glad it helps. Let me know what you find.

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