The Top Ten Civilian Conservation Corps Projects in Washington

To celebrate our 40th anniversary, we are posting Top 10 lists from the past 40 years. In this list, Speakers Bureau Janet Oakley shares the best CCC projects in our state that you can still visit today.

  • March 19, 2014
  • |
  • Top 10
  • |
  • By Humanities Washington staff

In honor of our 40th anniversary, Humanities Washington presents a series of top 10 lists, sharing the best of the best from a variety of humanities topics from the past 40 years. Composed by our Speakers Bureau presenters, these lists are designed to spark new ideas and inspire us to try something new in 2014. Look back on Spark each month for a new top 10 list!

Janet Oakley

Janet Oakley

In this Top 10 list, historian Janet Oakley shares some of her favorite local sites constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). The CCC was a Depression-era program that put young men to work in rural areas and parks throughout the country to help conservation efforts.

Oakley travels the state as part of the Humanities Washington Speakers Bureau with her presentation Tree Army: The Civilian Conservation Corps in Washington State, 1933-1941. Catch Oakley’s presentation in Burlington April 10 [Details] and Concrete May 29 [Details].

The top 10 Civilian Conservation Corps Projects in Washington State:

1. Deception Pass State Park: Picnic shelter

A Deception Pass State Park picnic shelter, built by the CCC

A Deception Pass State Park picnic shelter, built by the CCC










2. Mount Constitution, Orcas Island: Observation tower

Orcas Island Observation Tower

The Orcas Island Observation Tower












3. Twanoh State Park, Hood Canal: Picnic shelters

The shelters at Twanoh

Shelters at Twanoh State park










4. Ginkgo Petrified Forest State Park, Vantage: Ranger residences, interpretive center and trail system.

5. Mount Rainier National Park: Park employee housing at Longmire

One of the park employee houses at Longmire, Mt. Rainier

One of the park employee residences at Longmire, Mt. Rainier










6. Mount Baker National Forest: Austin Pass warming hut and ranger station

7. Dry Falls State Park: Dry Falls Vista kiosk

Dry Falls Vista Kiosk

The Dry Falls Vista kiosk, a CCC project










8. Lewis and Clark State Park, Chehalis: Many structures are still standing

9. Rainbow Falls State Park, Chehalis: The park was built by the CCC in 1935, including log structures such as picnic shelters

Rainbow Falls State Park

Rainbow Falls State Park








10) Saltwater State Park, Des Moines: The CCC built most of the park in 1930, including marine life viewing areas and salmon runs.

4 thoughts on “The Top Ten Civilian Conservation Corps Projects in Washington”

  1. Bob Chalfant says:

    Hi I am the park ranger at Rainbow Falls State Park in Chehalis Washington. I was going to contact you but not for this purpose. I don’t know where you got the picture you are using, but that IS NOT Rainbow Falls State Park in Chehalis Washington. Unfortunately we run in to this A LOT. Rainbow Falls is a gentle 4-6 foot drop in the Chehalis river. It is not a large (or by many standards) spectacular falls, though it is scenic. I am aware of a Rainbow Falls that is rather large with caves beneath it, but you need a plane ticket for that one…It is in Hawaii. This may or may not be that falls, but guaranteed it is not Rainbow Falls State park.

    If you could change this for the sake of accuracy etc. it would be wonderful.

    What I really wanted to ask was if Janet or someone could direct me towards Historical CCC information specific to The Rainbow Falls CCC project itself. I can find general information but never anything that just speaks to the Rainbow Falls project. I would like to pursue some historical interpretation at this site at some point in the future and would like to compile what I can in the meantime.

    1. Abby Rhinehart says:

      Hi Bob,

      Oh gosh, thank you so much for pointing this inaccuracy out. I really appreciate it. This is something I introduced while building the post, and I deeply apologize. I’ve changed the image. Our Washington Rainbow Falls is also quite beautiful, by the way!

      That sounds like a fantastic idea — I hope you are able to do historical interpretation at some point soon. I’ve forwarded your question on the Rainbow Falls CCC project historical information to Janet, and you should hear from her shortly (please email me if you don’t)!

      Thank you again!

      Abby Rhinehart
      Communications Officer, Humanities Washington

  2. Rick Dwyer says:

    Would love to attend if one of your presentations were nearer to Vancouver.

    1. Abby Rhinehart says:

      Hi Rick,

      Unfortunately, Janet doesn’t have any presentations scheduled in Southeast WA — but all of our speakers are still available for bookings through the end of the year, so it’s possible she could be in your neck of the woods at some point!

      Otherwise, you can check out other Humanities Washington events in your area here:

      Abby Rhinehart
      Communications Officer, Humanities Washington

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Humanities Washington

Get the latest news and event information from Humanities Washington, including updates on Think & Drink and Speakers Bureau events.