Biography of Chester Obremski

Enrollee, Unknown Company, Miles Standish State Forest, Plymouth, Massachusetts & Company 2115, Maupin (Wamio) Wapinitia, Oregon

   Chester Obremski enlisted in the The Civilian Conservation Corps ( CCC) in 1936. He was only 16 years old. Because he was not of consenting age, he used his older brother Arthur’s birth certificate. This “forgery” was common practice during the depression.

   In 1933, during the Great Depression, President Franklin D. Roosevelt created the CCCs, as one of the first emergency agencies in the homeland. Emergency Conservation Work, established as an independent agency, April 5, 1933, under authority of an emergency employment act of March 3l, 1933 to relieve unemployment and to restore the country's natural resources through public works.

   He was first assigned to The Miles Standish State Forest in Plymouth, Massachusetts, building drainage culverts, among other conservation projects.

   In 1937, he was transferred to Camp number 2115, in Maupin (Wamio) Wapinitia, Oregon, where he worked for 2-3 more years. The camp was located on a Native American reservation.

   Their work week consisted of 6 days of hard labor, building dams, constructing roads, fighting forest fires, and felling mammoth trees with crosscut saws and axes.

   They received a monthly stipend of $30.00, of which he sent $25.00 home to his family. His mother was widowed at an early age, and supported 5 children by washing laundry. She could not speak English, having come to this country from Poland as a child bride of 14 years of age.

   Sundays were rest days, occasionally finding entertainment in Maupin, Oregon. The residents of Maupin were not very accepting of the rowdy, young CCC men, despite the services rendered free of charge to the town’s people. At no cost to them, the CCC company plowed snow and repaired their roads and bridges.

   As to be expected, women were sought after by both locals and men from the camp. This caused a fair number of Saturday night brawls. Parades and “pow wows” were common events. There was not a lot of love lost between the Native Americans and the CCC men. Their physical strength, from their many hours of labor, was threatening to the locals.

   Chet has many fond memories and contributes his physical and mental stamina to his experience as one of FRD’s home land fighters.

   Chet left the CCCs in 1939 after his brother Arthur was killed by a car. He assumed the role as the sole supporter for the family.

   Chet and Eleanore Obremski settled in Hopkinton in 1959, where he presently still resides.

   Written by his daughter, as told by Chet Obremski. He is in his 90th year.

Email Mr. Obremski's family at : jerryandbevyoung AT mac.com

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