Biography of William Levitt
Leader, Enrollee, Company 225, Lovelock, Nevada & Averill Park, New York
Soldier, US Army, WWII
My name is William Levitt and I spent about 2 years in the CCC (1939-1940).
Ist year at Camp 225 (N.Y. enrollees) at Lovelock, Nevada where I advanced to Leader. I then requested a transfer East and served in Averill Park, N.Y. near Buffalo as an enrollee planting pine trees for 6 months. I then became an assistant to an Army reserve dentist traveling from camp to camp around the eastern part of New York. After 4 months I left the CCC to accept a civil service job in NYC.
In Nevada we worked for the Bureau of Reclamation, digging wells and building roads so the local ranchers could move their cattle and mostly sheep to water. We were in dry and dreary country. Sagebrush, rattlesnakes, sugar beets, and more sagebrush. For recreation we would hunt rattlesnakes, play ball, and each evening watch the Union Pacific "City of San Francisco" roar through town on its way from Chicago to San Francisco as we waved to the passengers in the well lit dining car. A very lonely moment for we New Yorkers.
Lovelock, Nevada population 1200 was the 5th largest "city" in Nevada. Our camp was on the "other side of the tracks" near the local legal bordello. Lovelock had one small movie house and we CCCers were restricted to the upper reaches back rows so as not to contaminate the locals. Segregation? You bet. However we had a basketball team which occasionally played the local H.S. team. Our closest CCC camp was at Winamucca. and I recall they lost 2 men who while fighting a brush fire could not outrun the flames.
I still have a lot of photos of the camp and friends. My time in the CCC prepared me well for the 4 years I spent in the Army in WW II. And the rest of my life.
----- William Levitt
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