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Designation: SCS-1  Date: 2021-03-19

Crow Creek

South Dakota Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp 13 mi N of Chamberlain, SD

Crow Creek

1934, 07/31 - 1934, 10/20, 2753
1934, 10/20 - 1935, 05/25, 2740
1935, 05/25 - 1938, May, 4726
Date Closed: 1938, May

Camp SCS-1 was at Crow Creek from 1935 to 1938 and at American Island from 1938 to1941.

Located Chamberlain, 13 miles north of Chamberlain, Camp Crow Creek was located on a dusty hill inside one of several horse shoe bends in Crow Creek about 1 mile from its confluence with the Missouri River--1/2 mile east of S. D. Highway 47 in Buffalo County.

It opened as a drought relief camp in 1934, and was a tent camp during the first summer. Its camp designation number probably was DPE followed by a 3 digit number. After being unoccupied during the winter of 1934-5, it reopened as Camp SCS-1 the next summer and became a "permanent" camp. The mess hall kitchen and bath house were built in 1934, but the eight barracks, headquarters, recreation hall-PX, infirmary, officers' quarters, foremen's quarters, maintenance shops, etc. were apparently not built until 1935.

The camp opened July 31, 1934, and closed in mid-May 1938.

Company 2753 was organized in July 1934 at Camp F-12 (Custer), was at Camp Crow Creek that summer, and moved to Camp F-1 (Mystic) in October.

The company arrived at Chamberlain, SD July 31, 1934, and moved by truck to Camp Crow Creek. The only permanent buildings, a mess hall-kitchen and bath house, were completed before the company's arrival. The company was housed in tents. The tents and frequent dust storms did not fit together so well at times and there were times when even the "native sons" admitted that weather conditions were a little disagreeable. The company survived, though, without any perceptible ill effects (1935).

Camp Crow CreekCamp Crow Creek in 1937-4726 in Barracks and 774 in Tents (Photo from Cooley Taylor)
Camp Crow CreekCamp Crow Creek from Southeast in 1937 (Photo from Lyle Derscheid)

All of the many windstorms were eclipsed by a small hurricane which swept over the camp at 11:30 p.m. August 13. Many of the tents were blown down and badly damaged, but there was no serious personal injury or damage done. It was extreme excitement when the tents started to leave the country (1935).

The 2 or 3 months spent at Crow Creek and Chamberlain were enjoyed by the company. This can be attributed mainly to the attitude of the people of Chamberlain and surrounding country. They were appreciative of what a company of the CCC could mean to any community and were more than willing to cooperate. When the company left, everyone was treated to a picture show and a dance as a farewell gesture (1935).x

xDerschied, Lyle A. "The Civilian Conservation Corps in South Dakota, 1933-1942." Brookings, SD, South Dakota State University Foundation Press, 1986. No longer in print. Available at some libraries but may not be checked-out.

Camp Crow CreekFace of Crow Creek Dam in 1938 Showing Diversion Tube (Photo from SCS)
Camp Crow CreekBack Crow Creek Dam in 1938 Showing Outlet of Diversion Tube (Photo from SCS)
Camp Crow CreekFrom Southeast Across Spillway to Camp in 1937 (Photo from Lyle Derscheid)
Camp Crow CreekFrom Bottom of Spillway to Two Cars at Top in 1938 (Photo from SCS)
Camp Crow CreekBack of Dam from East in Spring of 1938 (Photo from Lyle Derscheid)
Camp Crow CreekFrom Across Spillway in Spring of 1938 (Photo from Lyle Derscheid)
Lat / Lon always verify yourself
GPS always verify yourself
43° 58' 33.938" N99° 17' 55.270" W

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