On April 5, 1933, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed Executive Order 6101, establishing the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), a New Deal program that lasted until 1942.
My husband’s grandfather, Roy D. Pace, worked in the CCC as a young man — serving in, according to my husband’s family, the Grand Canyon. When looking through old photos recently, I came across this photo of Roy Pace and his CCC baseball team from the 1930s. Doing a search for the company name noted in the sign (Co. 819) revealed that Roy’s CCC company was the first of many CCC companies to indeed work in Grand Canyon National Park.
Grand Canyon’s first CCC company (Company 819) arrived on May 29, 1933 and continued on the South Rim until the end of the program in July, 1942.
The men of Company 819 built the stone wall along the rim between El Tovar Hotel and Bright Angel Lodge, improved the Bright Angel Trail, landscaped the Grand Canyon Village area and, constructed the Community Building. — Source: National Park Service
I also found this cool video produced by Grand Canyon National Park about the work done by the CCC. Projects — noted above on the NPS site — that Roy’s Company 819 worked on include the Rock Guard Wall (video spot 1:27), and the Community Building (video spot 2:05) built 1934-1935. My father says he remember hearing, growing up, that his grandfather worked on the telephone lines being strung across the canyon.
The video notes an official CCC history walking tour (.pdf download) in the park, which you can be sure Jeff and I will venture out to do soon now that I’ve confirmed his grandfather’s association with Company 819.
Searching for a bit more history about Company 819, I was thrilled to find Roy Pace listed in the camp yearbooks for the first and second year Company 819 was based in the Grand Canyon. Page 12 of both books states that Roy played first base on the company baseball team.