As a native Oregonian with family roots in both commercial fishing and logging, I cannot remember a time I did not know of the importance of the CCC – the Civilian Conservation Corps – to the state’s history. So many of the iconic places, such as Rim Village at Crater Lake and Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, that make the state the “Pacific Wonderland” that it is today owe much of their appearance, if not indeed their very existence, to this remarkable New Deal program.

However as much influence as the CCC had all across the U.S., many people today are increasingly unfamiliar with it, and even many who still remember it well are a little vague about how it worked. Fortunately, thanks to Professor Benjamin F. Alexander’s recently published The New Deal’s Forest Army; How the Civilian Conservation Corps Worked, the structure, activities, and goals of this remarkable program are once again easily available to all interested in learning about it.