Sweat and Stone
“I have been used to the out-of-doors all my life, but I shall never forget the feeling of complete isolation that came to me the first night I slept in a C.C.C. camp. There were no lights and one must sit on his bunk, and be ready to go to sleep when darkness came. Meals were out in the open, even in pouring rain. Wetness and dryness depended wholly on the weather. There were no chairs to sit on, and so, unless you could go to your bunk, you must stand, the ground not being attractive for sitting. . . . Never could anybody be so close to nature.
With hard work, and plenty of it, an apparently miraculous change has taken place in the part of the pine woods here where we live. First we had to clear away the brush and stubble in order to walk around a bit, then roads were built to permit access for trucks, later a telephone line was constructed, then later—much later—barracks instead of tents, a dining hall, and then finally—the crowning achievement—five miles of power line for electric lights. From something that was really nothing but land in the raw we have built a reasonably civilized community and each day and each week as it goes by we enlarge the periphery of our civilizing process; making it possible for more and more use to be made of this area of God’s earth.”
Harold S. Fraine, Supervisor
CCC Company 102
Myles Standish State Forest
Excerpted from “Youth Rebuilds: Stories from the C.C.C.”
American Forests Magazine, edited by Ovid Butler.
Highlights of CCC Work Done
The administration building and four log cabins built by the CCC at Mohawk Trail were featured in Albert Good’s 1938 book, Park and Recreation Structures, as outstanding examples
of CCC rustic design and are still used today.
Eliot Observation Tower is one of two rustic stone towers and picnic pavilions constructed by the CCC in the Blue Hills. The tower is an excellent example of CCC stonework.
The Mount Greylock Summit, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, contains an exceptional collection of CCC resources. Most notable is Bascom Lodge, as well as the associated outbuildings, roads, trails and a particularly well designed parking area.
The well preserved CCC roads and water holes illustrate the importance of the CCC in creating park infrastructure. The stone arch bridge shown here is an outstanding example of CCC craftsmanship.
The renovation of this administration building is a victory in the effort to preserve the rustic CCC structures. It is now being used as an interpretive center. The Berry Pond Circuit Road is a well preserved example of CCC parkway construction.
CCC features at Douglas include a picnic pavilion, administration building, stone culverts and well maintained water holes.
This rustic shelter is the only one of its type still remaining. Dingley Dell dam was another important CCC project at this forest, where there are many CCC camp buildings still remaining.
The CCC built many ponds for recreation, wildlife management and fire control such as this one near the Lorraine Park Campground.
Forests and Parks Shaped by the CCC
Franklin State Forest
Wrenthan State Forest
Petersham State Forest
Sutton State Forest
Townsend State Forest
East Mountain State Forest
Middlefield State Forest
Mount Grace State Forest
Otis State Forest
Peru State Forest