MILROY - From 1933 to 1941, the Civilian Conservation Corps toiled to build what would become Poe Valley State Park and on Saturday people will gather at the park to celebrate its history.
What is being dubbed a "gathering" by Bill Marcum, one of the guest speakers and descendant of a senior foreman who worked for the Forest Service, will be an all day event open to the public.
Most of the people who served in the CCC have long since passed away, however, Marcum is expecting one or two survivors to attend the event along with the descendants of CCC workers.
Marcum and others will bring a collection of memorabilia which includes a letter of authorization from the Department of Agriculture giving the green light for the camp to open.
Marcum said roughly 150 men worked at the camp, supplemented with anywhere between 10 and 15 support staff. The U.S. Army supervised the camp.
"They had the management skills, they knew how to move people and supplies around. They did it quite well." Marcum said.
What: Poe Valley State Park CCC Legacy day
When: 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday Aug. 11.
Call 667-3622 for more information
Marcum said the CCC project was initially focused on "forest management" and it wasn't until later that work shifted toward constructing a dam and state park, which in recent years underwent a multi-million dollar renovation project.
After erecting temporary tents at the park, the CCC workers built barracks, a mess hall and other buildings to keep the project moving along, Marcum said.
"They carried shovels instead of guns," Marcum said.
In addition to constructing the park and dam, Marcum said the CCC workers also finished the Siglerville Pike section down to Millheim.
Marcum said a great deal of the supplies for the Poe Valley camp came through Lewistown via train and many the workers settled in the Lewistown area after the project was complete.
Marcum said he encourages anyone with an interest in CCC history to come to Saturday's "gathering," where there will be a tour of the original officers' quarters building and lots of memorabilia to look at. People are encouraged to bring any personal mementos they have from the CCC years.