VOORHEES STATE PARK
Voorhees, like Parvin State Park, served as a camp for the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) - Franklin Roosevelt?s program to get people back to work during the Depression. The CCC planted trees and constructed shelters, picnic sites and trails throughout the park. Two overlooks provide scenic views of Round Valley Reservoir and Spruce Run Reservoir.
Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) History at Voorhees
From 1933-1941 about one thousand young men worked at Voorhees and Hacklebarney in a Depression-era federal agency known as the Civilian Conservation Corps. The CCC was the brainchild of one of the 20th century?s leading figures, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. The agency had two goals: to give jobs to unemployed young men, between the ages of 17 and 24 and veterans of World War I, and to undertake thousands of conservation projects across the nation in parks, forests and at historic sites.
When the CCC boys arrived at Voorhees in 1933, they found three relatively undeveloped parcels of land. The park still reflected Governor Voorhees? use of the property as a farm including pastures, woodland, barns and an apple orchard. By the time the CCC boys were finished working eight years later, under the supervision of the National Park Service (NPS) and the United States Army, they had built the present-day road systems, shelters, latrines, visitor amenities, and trail systems or major public access areas that still remain or are used in different ways today.
Each CCC company had 200 men, although that number was not always maintained. The CCC camp at Voorhees was initially known as Camp #20 or Camp Voorhees. Later it was given the designation of SP#5 with Company 1268 assigned to it. SP designated State Park and the company number coincided with the Army Corps district.
CCC boys were paid $30 a month and $25 was automatically sent home to family members or guardians for their support. The boys were paid $2.50 every other week. For many enrollees at Voorhees, the CCC provided vocation and avocational classes. The education program was known as ?The School of the Woods? and included job training, current events and access to a camp library.
The staff of Voorhees State Park continues to pursue learning about their CCC history. All former enrollees or surviving family members of Company 1268 are encouraged to contact the park office at 908-638-6969.
Additionally, in an effort to show our appreciation to the enrollees of CCC Company 1268, Voorhees is planning to erect a life-sized bronze statue of a CCC worker at the entrance of Company Street. This statue would commemorate the outstanding work of the CCC throughout this great country during the years of 1933 to 1943. Contact the Voorhees State Park main office at 908-638-6969 to learn more about how to be a part of this effort!
CCC history courtesy of Peter Osborne, author Images of America: Hacklebarney and Voorhees State Parks.
Campsites: 47 tent and trailer sites with fire rings and picnic tables are available. Modern toilets and showers are within walking distance. Trailer sanitary station is open April 1 through October 31. Campsites open April 1 through October 31.
Group campsites: Two group sites; capacity: 50 campers each. Picnic tables, fire rings, toilets, showers. Open April 1 through October 31.
Shelters: Three shelters. Cabin-like structures with wood stove for heat and two double-deck bunks, which sleep up to four people. Sites include a fire ring and picnic table. Open April 1 through October 31.