Sunday, May 29, 2016

Camp Sage: Civilian Conservation Corps Facility

The following information was found, of all places, on Ebay. The seller was using it to explain an item (a 1 cent CCC token) for sale. It was among information on several Arkansas CCC Camps and the seller did not cite the source:

Camp Sage, Company 3780, was located at Stella near Melbourne (Izard County). It was built in 1937–38, situated on a hill overlooking a rural area, and held from 175 to 200 people at its peak. A fire-watch tower stood adjacent to the camp. Work activities were connected with forest husbandry and soil conservation: building forest roads, stringing telephone lines, building a side camp, drainage control, and containment of forest fires. Later, some of the roads were converted to county roads. During the last half of 1941, activity dwindled; the side camp shut down, and enlistments declined. By November, Camp Sage was disbanded.

I have read that the workers from Camp Sage assisted the NYA Resident Training Project in Melbourne with the construction of the modern courthouse. 
The Camp was located on the ridge at Stella on the west side of Highway 69. The EIC Crew went there a few years ago for a brief visit and was able to get a few photos of structures that remain. I'm guessing that the large concrete block structures with inscriptions were the piers for the fire tower mentioned in the passage above.

We located several areas with paving stones, some border stones, what was likely the gate to the facility, and a number of other concrete structures that were either part of  shop buildings or even shower/lavatory areas.

I've misplaced my CD version of the Izard County Historian quarterlies and will provide more information about the site in a later update.


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