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Jack Russell: A New Deal for Acadia – The Civilian Conservation Corps Contribution 1933-1942

CCC at Sieur de Monts. NPS/Archive photo.
Date: Thursday Aug 11, 2016
Time: 8:15 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.


During the Great Depression, some 3,000 poor boys, mostly from Maine, came to Acadia for six months or more to work hard as part of the New Deal Civilian Conservation Corps. Who were they? Why did they come? What did they do for our park and communities? What legacy did they leave?

As Acadia founder and superintendent George Dorr said, aside from the men who built our roads, the CCC lads were the ANP workforce in the 1930s. They opened new trails and improved old ones, planted thousands of trees, made fire roads, fought some fires, built footbridges, and did scores of public works projects in the surrounding communities. Like the pond at Somesville? CCC. Enjoy the Ocean Drive Path and the Perpendicular Trail? CCC.

Fortunately, the ANP archives include a strong record of CCC work in our park, over forty oral histories gathered from CCCers later in life, and hundreds of photographs. These are the foundation of a passionate and respectful history of the CCC in Acadia offered by local historian and Acadia Centennial co-chair Jack Russell.

A family visiting Acadia today might camp at Blackwoods, greet the sun with a walk along the Ocean Drive, and enjoy the mid-morning views from Beech Cliff. After a swim at Echo Lake they could take the Lurvey Spring fire road over to Long Pond for a walk up the western side and a picnic on the rocks, followed by a hike up the Perpendicular Trail to admire the beautiful stone step work. Their good day might end at sunset beneath the century-old evergreens of Pretty Marsh. Every step of their passage through Acadia would have been opened for them a long lifetime ago by the CCC.

Location: The Claremont Hotel
Clarkpoint Room
22 Claremont Road, Southwest Harbor

Contact Name: Timothy Stanley
Contact Phone #: (207) 244-5036
Event web page:
Event Sponsor(s): Jack Russell The Claremont Hotel 

This is a free event.

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