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Will Grow Robinson

Pierre, SD

1939-40, 2750, Orman Dam, BR-2 Commander
1941, 789, Este, F-3

Dana Nelson shared the following with the Civilian Conservation Corps Museum of South Dakota.

"My grandfather, Will Grow Robinson, served in the CCC in South Dakota. A biography that his oldest daughter (my aunt) prepared on his life reads:

'Beginning in the summer of 1939 the family moved from Ottawa, Kansas to South Dakota. Will at that time was the commanding officer at the Civilian Conservation Corps Camp, located east of Belle Fourche adjacent to Orman Dam. His family lived in the little house on Battle Creek. Will spent as much time as possible with them there.

During the cold winter months of 1939-40, Will moved his family to Belle Fourche. After some point after that move, he was transferred to the CCC Camp Estes, east of Rochford, which brought him considerably closer to home which was appreciated by all. He wasn't there long however, as he had secured a position as an investigator with the Civil Service Commission in Washington, D.C.

Will Grow Robinson May 11, 1893--February 24, 1973. Will is the youngest son of Doane Robinson, and later in his career served as the South Dakota State Historian. He has been inducted into the South Dakota Hall of Fame.'"

PIERRE (AP) - Services will be held Tuesday in Pierre for Will Robinson, 79, longtime state historian who died Saturday night at a local hospital.

Robinson, son of South Dakota's first state historian, the late Doane Robinson, served for more than 20 years as secretary of the South Dakota Historical Society, retiring in 1968.

Robinson was born May 11, 1893, in Watertown and moved to Pierre with his parents in 1901. He graduated from Yankton College in 1915 and received a law degree from the University of South Dakota in 1921.

He was a member of a Pierre law firm from 1921 until 1935 when he returned to active duty with the U.S. Army. He had served in the tank corps in World War One. He retired from the Army reserve with the rank of colonel in 1953.

Robinson founded the Pierre Legion relays, one of the Capital City's top annual sporting events, in the 1920s.

Robinson is survived by his widow, Martha; two daughters, Mrs. Warren (Suzanna) Dixon of Mitchell and Mrs. Gene (Barbara) Nelson of Yankton; and one son, Will D. Robinson of Rapid City.

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