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Manuscripts by Subject - Politics / Government - #10648

Title: Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Project Survey

Dates: 1937-1994

Collection Number:  MSS 10648

Quantity: .5 feet and oversize

Abstract: Records consist of individual forms completed for a 1994 survey conducted by the State Historical Society of North Dakota Museum Division completed by men who were part of the North Dakota CCC. Survey information includes enlistment location, date mustered in/out and rank, company, project information, camp location, dates, type of work performed, recreational activities, classes taken while in CCC, origin of men in company, and employment after the CCC. 

Several survey respondents donated photographs and/or reminiscences, copies of discharge papers, a CCC annual, CCC newsletters, copies of photographs, copies of official documents, and biographical information. A scrapbook of photographs was transferred to the photo archives. Biographical information is available in this document and in the case file for donors of photographs or manuscript material.

Provenance: The records were donated to the State Historical Society of North Dakota by each donor. Thomas Falck donated the photographs in September 1993. Woodrow Hamers donated the annual on October 17, 1993. Harold Perry Leland donated copies of his photograph collection and papers in June 1996. Alton Long donated issues of the Peavie Press in March 1983. Maurice Martin donated his CCC scrapbook before November 1993. Jack Mayer donated his photographs in March 1993. Bennie Molde donated his photographs in April 1993. Eitel “Bill” Pigors donated the photograph on behalf of Oscar Liedtke, New Leipzig, before November 8, 1993. George Rhone donated his photographs in the summer of 1992. Linda Visocsky donated the photograph on behalf of her father, John Wiltse before November 8, 1993.

Property Rights: The State Historical Society of North Dakota owns the property rights to this collection.

Copyrights: Copyrights to this collection remain with the donor, publisher, author, or author's heirs.  Researchers should consult the 1976 Copyright Act, Public Law 94-553, Title 17, U.S. Code or an archivist at this repository if clarification of copyright requirements is needed.         

Access: This collection is open under the rules and regulations of the State Historical Society of North Dakota.

Citation: Researchers are requested to cite the collection title, collection number, and the State Historical Society of North Dakota in all footnote and bibliographic references.       
Transfer: A scrapbook was separated from the collection and transferred to the Photo Archives (2007-P-009 Civilian Conservation Corps 2771, 2772, 797-Maurice Martin)

Collection note: Oversized photographs 10648-01 – 10648-04 are located with oversize photographs and in map case drawers.

(Biographical information was researched by Barbara Handy-Marchello in 2007)

Thomas Lee Falck was born March 29, 1918 in Portal Township, Burke County, ND to Frithjof (Fred) and Ragna Falck. Fred was born in Norway and Ragna was born in ND.  Thomas had four siblings: Ida Pollard (1917), Roy (1921), Fred (1922) and May Thon (1923). He completed two years of high school. He was employed by the CCC with Co. 794 for about six months during the winter of 1935-1936 at the Peace Garden camp north of Dunseith, ND. They spent the winter fencing and breaking rock for building of shelters. Falck worked in the aircraft industry before and during World War II in San Diego, CA. He was enlisted in the Army May 1956. He married Florence E. Pero Borden on January 10, 1979. Falck died July 23, 2005 in Escondido, CA.

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH – Woodrow Mathias “Woody” Hamers
(from Hamers’ obituary from the Eastgate Funeral Home website at Retrieved 15 January 2012)

Woodrow Mathias “Woody” Hamers was born near Orrin, ND, to Henry "Harry" and Alvina (Weigelt) Hamers. He was baptized on July 28, 1917, at St. Francis Xavier Church. He attended school and graduated from the eighth grade in Drake, ND. On October 15, 1938, Woody married his lifelong sweetheart, Emma Rauschenberger. They had one daughter, Connie, in 1939.

Mr. Hamers was enrolled in the Civilian Conservation Corps in 1937 as a stone mason. He enlisted at Fort Lincoln and was mustered in April 19, 1917 and mustered out September 30, 1937. He worked at the Peace Garden with unit 794-SP1 (Co. 794) based at Kelvin, ND. World War II brought Woody and Emma to Bremerton, WA, where Woody worked in the shipyards. Upon their return to Drake, he worked a dray line with his stepfather, Harry Billings. Woody later began employment with the Soo Line Railroad, where he continued working until retirement in 1980.

In 1978, his railroad work brought about a move to Harvey, ND, where he and Emma also managed the Americana Motel until his retirement from the railroad. In 1982, Woody and Emma moved to Bismarck to be near family and make new friends, and became faithful members of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church. Woody was a member of the Drake Volunteer Fire Department. In his spare time, Woody enjoyed many sports, including hunting, fishing, and playing baseball, as well as he and Emma were avid fans of Twins baseball and rarely missed watching them play when games were televised. Following the death of Emma in 2010, Woody resided at Edgewood Vista in Bismarck until May 2011, when he moved to Elm Crest Manor in New Salem. He was known as "a favorite" at both places, and enjoyed his time in these homes very much. He passed away peacefully at Elm Crest Manor in New Salem, ND, on August 6, 2012.

(from Barbara Handy-Marchello’s 2007 research and from Johnson’s obituary in The Minot Daily News July 6, 1997)

Dale Johnson was born April 6, 1913 in Varina, Pocahontas County, Iowa, to Alfred and Nora “Maude” Johnson. He had five siblings: Owen (1909), Herle (1910), Woodrow (1912), Leo (1915) and Evelyn (1916). He was raised in the Varina area until the family moved to Glenburn, ND, and he attended school in Renville County. He later farmed in that area, retiring in 1977. He continued to remain active in the farming operation. He was employed for the Civilian Conservation Corps with Co. as an Exchange Steward at Watford City, ND, and in the Black Hills area of SD from 1934-1937.

He married Nina Smith on June 10, 1937, in Hill City, SD. They returned to Renville County and continued farming. He worked part-time for the Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service for 25 years, measuring land tracts and grain bins. He was a member of the Glenburn Elevator and served on its board for many years. He was also a member of the Farmers Union and the Minot Moose Lodge. He was a member of the First Baptist Church, Glenburn. Dale and Nina had four children: Lawrence, Fern, Shirley and Patricia. Johnson passed away July 2, 1997 in a Minot health care center.

(from Barbara Handy-Marchello’s 2007 research and from correspondence in the case file)

Harold Perry Leland was born in 1915 in Lake Williams Township, Kidder County, ND, to Henry and Rachel (Riskadahl). His siblings were Martha (1910), Esther (1912), May (1918), Edith (1923), Evelyn (1927), John (1914), Haken (1916), Adolph (1920), Henry (1921) and Allen (1925). He graduated High School, probably in Robinson, ND, and had CCC training at Little Rock, AK, in typing, shorthand and aeronautics. Harold Leland married Irene. He served as a laborer, company clerk, payroll clerk, power plant operator, ambulance driver, truck driver, and assistant to camp doctor in the CCC from 1935-1940 in Dickinson, Hettinger, Larimore, Lemmon, SD, Mystic, SD, Fort Meade, SD, Salmon, ID, Blackfoot, ID, Little Rock, AK.  He then worked as a Logistics Officer with the US Government at the Hill Air Force Base, Ogden, UT. He retired in 1986. (Please see Leland’s reminiscence for further detail about his CCC experiences).

(from Barbara Handy-Marchello’s 2007 research and from Long’s obituary in the Minot Daily News September 29, 2009)

Alton George Long was born Feb. 22, 1919, a son of Alton H. and Florence B. (Purdy) Long, in Miles City, Mont. He came to North Dakota as a young child and graduated from Granville High School in 1937. In 1939, he joined the Civilian Conservation Corps and was stationed at Foxholm with Company 796. He spent one year as Assistant Education Adviser under Raymond Beauclair, working in the library, teaching classes and working as editor of the camp paper Peavie Press. He then spent 6 months as Canteen Steward. He was discharged in September 1940.

On Oct. 15, 1940, Alton enlisted in the Army National Guard, and following the attack on Pearl Harbor, found himself in active duty. He proudly served his country, receiving the Good Conduct Medal, American Defense Medal and Ribbon, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Ribbon and the ETO Ribbon. He was honorably discharged Sept. 23, 1945.

Alton was united in marriage to Genevieve Covell on Nov. 26, 1944, in Granville. They made their home in Fort Smith, AK, until Alton was sent to Europe until the end of the war. Following his return, they made their home in Granville, where Alton owned and operated Gamble's Hardware. He also served as a policeman in Granville. In 1951, he joined the Minot Police Department and for several years was in charge of school patrol. He continued to work for the City of Minot for 28 years, later as a purchasing agent, technician for the voting machines and superintendent of the Sanitation Department. When he took over the sanitation department, it was his job to clean up and close the old open dump and transition to the landfill method of refuse disposal, one of the first such operations in the state.

Alton retired from the City of Minot in 1979, however, quickly realized that as "a people person" he needed to remain in the workforce. That determined, he began selling specialty advertising items to local business people. He loved the opportunity this gave him to "shoot the breeze" with friends, old and new, regularly. Ultimately it was the adventure of travel that convinced Alton to retire. Alton and Genevieve traveled often, usually by car, meandering the country's back highways and byways, enjoying as much of each beautiful region as they possibly could. Genevieve died May 28, 2008, at the age of 86.
Alton was a member of the Congregational United Church of Christ, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Last Man's Club and the American Legion, all of Minot. Alton G. Long died Thursday, Sept. 24, 2009, in a Minot nursing home.

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH – Maurice Henry Martin
(from Martin’s obituary in The McKenzie County Farmer December 3, 1997)

Maurice Henry Martin, 83, of Valparaiso, IN, died Wednesday November 25, 1997, at Mary E. Bartz Hospice Center, Valparaiso….A graveside service [was] held December 4 at the Rawson Cemetery, Rawson, ND. 

Mr. Martin was born July 7, 1914, in Miles City, MT, to Lafe and Mamie (McCormick) Martin. He graduated from Alexander High School, Alexander, ND, in 1933. He then belonged to the Civilian Conservation Corps for four years. He served with Companies 2771 and 2772 in the North Unit of the Theodore Roosevelt Park and Company 797 in Watford City.

On December 31, 1938, he married Helen Feiring in Alexander. Mr. Martin came to Valparaiso in 1939 to attend the Dodge School of Telegraphy. He worked for Casbon Electric and later at Indiana General for 38 years, retiring in 1980. Mr. Martin was a member of the Porter County Civil Defense and was a Ham Radio operator since 1936.

Mr. Martin is survived by his wife, Helen of Valparaiso; one son, David P. (Phyllis) Martin of Kouts, IN; two daughters, Mary Nickel of McGregor, TX and Ruth (John) Dyer of Princeton, IN; one brother, Harold (Esther) Martin or Williston, ND; seven grandchildren and one great-grandson.

(Biographical information was researched by Barbara Handy-Marchello in 2007 and from Mayer’s obituary in The McCluskly Gazette June 21, 1996, p.4)

Jack R. Mayer was born July 3, 1915, at McClusky, ND, the son of Daniel and Elizabeth (Goehring) Mayer. Daniel and Elizabeth were born in Russia, and Daniel was a road builder and thresher. Jack had eleven siblings: Frederick (1904), Pauline (1905), Daniel (1906), Bertha Hamilton (1908), August (1909), Martha, Edward (1919), Elizabeth Boetler, Robert (1922), Virginia, Ned (1923) and Andrew. He grew up in McClusky and served with the Civilian Conservation Corps as a Machinist in the Badlands (1934) before graduating from McClusky High School in 1936.

He then attended the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks for one year. He moved to Los Angeles and attended a junior college. He enlisted with the US Army on March 26, 1941 as a private and served both statewide and in the Pacific Theatre as a lieutenant.

He married Jessie Thomas in Louisville, KY. After his discharge, he worked for the city of Los Angeles for several years. He also co-owned and managed the P & M Technical Services in Sepulveda, CA. He pioneered Contract Engineering services to serve mostly the aerospace industry. He was also involved with the Far West Engineering Co. Inc., A specialty job placement service. Jesse died in 1984.

He then married Pauline Davis December 31, 1985, in Las Vegas. They lived in Escondido, CA, Sun City West, AZ, and then moved to Peoria, AZ. They were traveling back to North Dakotas when he became ill and was hospitalized in Pueblo. He was preceded in death by five brothers: Fred, Daniel Jr., Edward, Robert and A. Ned; and two sisters, Martha Still and Pauline Thatcher.

(From Molde’s obituary in The Walsh County Record December 16, 1998)

Bennie Molde was born November 2, 1913, the son of Andrew and Clara (Thompson) Bolde, at Bowman, where he grew up and attended school. He served in the Civilian Conservation Corps in the Watford area from 1935-1937, and with Company 2772 in Medora, before moving to Grafton, where he worked for Williamson Stock Farm. He married Mildred Burns November 17, 1935, in Baker, Montana. They lived in Grafton, where he worked for Grafton Milk Co. on the Gary Demers farm, and tended bar at the VFW

Club and Bolo Lanes. In recent years, he and his wife were host couple at Elmwood Mansion in Grafton. Bennie Died December 14, 1998 at his home. He is buried at the St. John’s Catholic Church cemetery, Grafton.

He is survived by his wife; daughters Dianne (Jerry) Urbauer, Portland, OR; Bonnie (Paul) Strand, Anoka, MN; Susan (Craig) Conway, Duluth, MN; Gail Stenerson, Adams, Mary (John) Dusck and Lisa (Craig) Ferguson, both of Grafton, Marcia (David) Seeba, Oakwood; sons Bill, Tom (Robin) and Jim (Beth) all of Grafton; Bobby (Jan), Grand Junction, CO; Danny (Sheila), Highlands Ranch, CO; and Jay (Terri), Little Falls, MN; 27 grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren and sister, Adeline Thompson, Petaluma, CA. He was preceded in death by daughters Janice and Judy French; grandson, Chad; brother, Lloyd; and sister, Mabel Blume.

(From Liedtke’s obituary in the Grant County News November 11, 1992, p. 9)

Oscar Liedtke was born November 30, 1911 to Fred and Karolina (Gartner) Liedtke at their farm near New Leipzig. He grew up there and attended a rural school, working with his parents as a young man. He served in the Civilian Conservation Corps during the 1930s with Company 2763 at Devils Den, AK. In 1937 he moved to California and worked as a truck driver for many years, driving for Allied Van Lines.
He returned to the Elgin-New Leipzig area in 1989 and had resided at Dakota Hills in Elgin and most recently at the nursing home in Glen Ullin. He passed away November 4, 1992 at the Marian Manor Nursing Home in Glen Ullin following a lengthy illness.
He was preceded in death by his wife, the former Edith Bloom.
Surviving are one brother: Fred W. Liedtke of New Leipzig, two sisters: Pauline Lok of Sacramento, CA, and Annie Milne of Idaho Falls, Idaho and numerous nieces and nephews.

(Biographical information was researched by Barbara Handy-Marchello in 2007 and from Pigors’ obituary in the Star Tribune December 27, 2011)

Eitel “Bill” Pigors was born October 5, 1916 in Township 136, south of Hebron, Hettinger County, ND, to Wilhelm “William” and Christina. Wilhelm (1884-1968) was a farmer and minister, who was born in Germany. Christina (1895-1983) was born in Russia. Bill had a brother, Reuben (1919-1995).   He served with the Civilian Conservation Corps Co. 796, Foxholm and Bismarck, ND, 1935-1938. From 1942-1945 he served with the US Army in Europe, and in the African and Mid-Eastern theaters, as Sergeant. Pigors was employed in the State Capitol building, the Occident Elevator in Bismarck, and Heupel Chevrolet in Elgin, ND. He married Elsie Johana Liedtke, and the couple had four children: Russell (1955), Marilyn (1957), Julie (1958) and Lori (1962). Throughout his lifetime, Bill resided in Hettinger County; Groton, SD (1921-1927); rural Beulah, ND; Hebron, ND; Foxholm, ND; Bismarck, ND; Elgin, ND; Mandan, ND; and Minneapolis, MN. He was a member of the Assembly of God Church, Elgin, and was on the School Board in Elgin. He died December 25, 2011 in Minneapolis.

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH – George Franklin Rhone
George Franklin Rhone was born January 24, 1921 in Solon, ND. He served with Unit 1723 in the Civilian Conservation Corps, in Walker, MN and Shoshoni, WY from 1939-1940. He served in the United States Navy in World War II, Korea and Vietnam: he enlisted with the US Navy on January 4, 1941 and was released February 25, 1945; he enlisted again on May 11, 1951 and was released April 21, 1955; he enlisted a third time on July 23, 1959 and was released November 1, 1968. George Rhone died May 19, 1998. He is buried in the North Dakota Veterans Cemetery in Mandan, Morton County, ND. His last residence was Brunswick, Georgia.

(From Rhone’s obituary in the Bismarck Tribune, May 21, 1998, p. 9A; and

(From Wiltse’s obituary in the Minot Daily News June 22, 1987)

John Wiltse was born January 5, 1915, in Deering to Glenn and Carie Wiltse, and was reared there. In the 1930s he joined the Civilian Conservation Corps and worked with the corps in various places in North Dakota and with Company 2771 in Grand Marais, MN. On June 1, 1939, in Towner, he married Mabel Johnson. They farmed in Kottke Valley Township, McHenry County, in the Deering area. During his years on the farm he served on the Kottke Valley School Board. In September 1962, they moved to Minot. She died in 1982. He was self employed in Minot as a painter and in construction. John died at his home in Minot June 20, 1987. Hi is buried at Rosehill Memorial Park, Minot.

Survivors: Sons, Larry, Montrose, CO; Donald and Blain, both Grand Junction, CO; John, Center; daughters: Joanne Anhorn, Deering; Linda Visocsky and Sheila Wiltse, both Minot; 13 grandchildren; one great-grandchild; brother, Delbert, Minot; sisters, Lillian Berry and Elizabeth Nerem, both Minot.


Box 1:
1 Falck, Thomas Lee, 3 photographs
2 Hamers, Woodrow, CCC 1937 annual, 7th Corps area (with 16 photographs)
3 Johnson, Dale, 77 photographs, including 1 panoramic photograph of Deming, NM, Adjacent to Camp “Cody,” September 1917 (10648-02)
4 Leland, Perry, 66 negatives (copies of 33 photographs front and back made by SHSND staff) Leland’s reminiscence “The Story of my C.C.C. Days” written June 30, 1996, and photo copies of the “Official Annual of the North Dakota District CCC Seventh Corps Area, 1937” and the “History of Camp Lodge SP-4, Company 795” from the South Dakota District History
5 Long, Alton, 11 issues of the Peavie Press, Foxholm, ND, 1939-1940 and two photocopies of photographs of the CCC camp
6 Maurice Martin, photocopy of scrapbook that was transferred to the photo archives (now collection 2007-P-009)
7 Mayer, Jack, 5 photographs
8 Molde, Bennie, 2 photographs
9 Pigors, Bill, panoramic photograph of Company 2763 CCC Devils Den, AR (10648-03) (Pigors is not in the photograph but donated it on behalf of Oscar Liedtke, from New Leipzig, enrolled in Company 2763 until it returned to North Dakota and split up; the group Liedtke was in went to Bottineau)
10 Rhone, George, 47 photographs, including 1 panoramic photograph of Company 1723 CCC Walker, MN, August 10, 1938 (10648-01)
11 Wiltse, John (Linda Visocsky), oversize photograph of ND CCC Co. 2771 at Good Harbor Camp, Grand Marais, MN, August 8, 1934 (copy) (10648-04)
12 Surveys returned:
Anderson, Conrad A. 
Anderson, Ralph O.
Best, Howard
Brown, Robert W.
Carlson, Milford L.
Casady, Allen Robert
Chappell, Sherman W.
Dalzell, Clarence
Dusek, Frank H.
Focht, Jacob G.
Foster, Warren T.
Gustafson, Paul E.
Hartinger, Joseph R.
Holland, Pershing “Percy” G.
Hummel, Edwin Jacob
Jahner, George A.
Kessel, Richard Jack
Kloubec, Melvern G.
Knote, Wayne E.
Kraft, Earl L.
Landes, Duane
Lemer, Benjamin
Myers, Bennie
Nathan, Elroy N.
Neva, George                   
Rasmusson, Max P.
Ratliff, Clayton R.
Rolfsnes, Martin J.
Rosling, Arnold H.
Rosling, Carl A.
Schmitz, Herman
Senger, Edward
Shauf, Bud
Skogen, Elmer B.
Smith, John Harris
Sommars, Ralph
Spelevoy, Boris
Steiner, Joseph B.
Voltz, Steve       
Willardsen, Alfred M.
13 Surveys sent out (no return)
14 Blank surveys
15 Miscellaneous correspondence


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