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Although Iowa is a state that is predominantly known for its agricultural history, there is a strong history within the conservation and preservation movements. During the fall of 2001 the Iowa Department of Natural Resources began an oral history project to document the contributions of the Civilian Conservation Corps, its members, and their stories in Iowa during the 1930's and 1940's. Since that time several hundred surviving members have been identified, and to date over 125 have been interviewed. In most cases interviews were taped or even video recorded and are being transcribed to help preserve their stories for generations to come. Many of the participants have provided the photographs used in this website and countless other documents and personal mementos for the Iowa CCC Museum located at Backbone State Park in near Manchester, Iowa.
This website is the first of several ways the information and stories collected during the project will be made available to the public. In addition to the information found here, a brief video is currently in production about the CCC in Iowa. Ultimately, the information will be compiled into a book and companion CD ROM that will be available for distribution to schools and other interested parties. We hope you enjoy the opportunity to visit with some of our CCCers via their pictures and stories that are included here.
Below are links to a few other CCC site and resources on the internet. Rather than reinventing the wheel and copying all the links here, we've linked to a few sites that we feel are superb resources or that are links to neighboring states.
National Archives and Records
A Missouri based non-profit organization that tracks CCC alumni groups and support organizations. Site contains extensive lists of camps, roster and active alumni groups. A great research tool for those looking to learn more about the CCC.
The Civilian Conservation Corps and the National Park Service, 1933-1942: An Administrative History
African Americans in the CCC. A great site for photos and history on minority participation in the groundbreaking project.
A searchable online database of CCC camp documents, papers and publications. A great research tool.
South Dakota CCC information
Civilian Conservation Corps and Illinois State Parks
The Iowa DNR CCC Oral History Project would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of the many volunteers who received training and have been interviewing and transcribing meeting with CCCers over the course of the past year.
The CCC Iowa Participants were contacted and interviewed for this program during 2002. Below are PDF files with the full text transcriptions of interviews with Iowa CCCers. We will be continually adding new texts as they become available.
Please bear in mind that this is a volunteer run program so it may take some time to transcribe the 150+ interviews we have already completed. Those with "download interview" not clickable will be available as they are transcribed.
Darrell ArntzenBill BirdNancy and Roy DowningJim FarnsworthJim SchefflerBob SchierbaumRon WilliamsLarry Wilson
Becky GaffneyJunie GookinSam HiamSue McWilliamsPat Taylor