History of 3629th Civilian Conservation Corps Company

 

CCC Company 3629, Camp Crivitz, Camp S-104-Wis., Crivitz, Wisconsin

 

From Sparta Civilian Conservation Corps District, Sixth Corps Area, 1937 Annual

 

History 3629th Company
Camp Crivitz
S-104-Wis.
Crivitz, Wisconsin

          The 3629th Company is located in Marinette County, fifteen miles from the small village of Crivitz, Wisconsin. The camp is located at the confluence of the beautiful Peshtigo and Thunder Rivers.

          The construction of the camp was finished October 19, 1935, by Lieut. L.K. Welch and the first enrollees to occupy the camp came from Rapid River, Michigan, under the command of Capt. Ralph A. Palmer.

          In the year of 1935, the work done in Camp Crivitz was one of road building, mostly fire lanes and roads to planned work projects. These projects were carried out under the direction of Harry Steiro, Project Superintendent, who has remained with the company up through to the present time.

          In 1936 Camp Crivitz had a great deal of difficulty. It started out with three cases of spinal meningitis. Two of these men died and one recovered. The morale of the camp was at a low ebb. About this time, Camp Mountain was disbanded and Lieut. Harry A. Ruhe was transferred to Camp Crivitz as Commanding Officer. He brought with him Pete Korpowski, the famous mess steward who is known all over Northern Wisconsin for his ability to put out good things to eat. Under the guidance of Lieut. Ruhe, Camp Crivitz began to forge ahead and it became one of the cleanest camps in the district.

          The Forestry Department had made rapid strides in timber stand improvement, planting new plantations with Norway, jack and white pines. It was during 1936 that the trout rearing ponds were started at Little Falls. It is well toward completion at the present time and has turned out over 200,000 trout six inches in length or over. This is an outstanding piece of work. It is planned to cover eighty acres of land. In addition to this, the Forest Service has hard-surfaced most of the roads in this vicinity.

          In January, 1937, Lieut. Harry A. Ruhe was transferred to Camp Brule, and Lieut. Zarwell was transferred to Camp Crivitz from Camp Scott Lake. With the coming of Lieut. Zarwell to Crivitz might be called a new era in construction and beautification. The mess hall was redecorated with paint, curtains were hung on the windows. Soft lights were installed. This made the mess hall a cheerful, radiant place to dine. In the meantime, a camp orchestra was organized to play for the evening meal. The new recruits that came to Crivitz were mostly from Wisconsin and Illinois. They were a very high type of men and the morale of the camp developed a new high. The athletic teams from Crivitz were noted for their powers on the track, having won the track meet at Antigo competing with twenty-four other camp teams.

          The recreational hall was remodeled and a very beautiful store was installed in the center of the recreational hall. On each side of the store were pool and ping-pong tables and other means of amusement. The reading room and educational facilities were the pride of the 3629th Company and highly praised by all who looked upon it. The men claimed it was the best in the Sixth Corps Area, but Lieut. Zarwell and Mr. Kennedy believed that it was superior to anything in the First Inspection Area. The reading room was trimmed in light ivory with borders of oriental red. The floor was covered with linoleum to match with the rest of the color scheme. It is no wonder that the men in Camp Crivitz took pride in their camp. They should, because they built it and made it what it is. The Forest Service in the spring and winter of 1937 were busy with the improving of the timber stand and with developing the fish-rearing ponds. Camp Crivitz is still moving forward. Our motto – “Nothing is too good for Camp Crivitz.”

----- Submitted by Curator

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