• "Typists in Headquarters of Commanding Officers," 1936. Courtesy of the New York Public Library.

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    Gettysburg, Pa., C.C.C. [Civilian Conservation Corps] ; Colored typists in Headquarters of Commanding Officers, Rinehart, May 1936
    • Date
    • 1936-1936
    • Description
    • Handwritten caption on back: "Walter L. Graham, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, one of the 300 colored typists in the CCC [Civilian Conservation Corps] who gained promotion through the campaign of the United Government Employs organization. He is responsib... more
      Handwritten caption on back: "Walter L. Graham, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, one of the 300 colored typists in the CCC [Civilian Conservation Corps] who gained promotion through the campaign of the United Government Employs organization. He is responsible to Captain Fredrick L. Slade, colored commanding officer of this CCC camp. less
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      The New York Public Library is interested in learning more about items you've seen on our websites or elsewhere online. If you have any more information about an item or its copyright status, we want to hear from you. Please contact DigitalCollections@nypl.org with your contact information and a link to the relevant content. less
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  • CCC vocational projects for African American veterans in Yorktown Virginia, 1933. Courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration.

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    Civilian Conservation Corps, Third Corps Area: Yorktown, Virginia, Co. 1351- vocational projects for "colored veterans"
    • Creator
    • Roosevelt, Franklin D. (Franklin Delano), 1882-1945.
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    • Unrestricted
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    • National Archives and Records Administration
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    • Franklin D. Roosevelt Library

  • CCC vocational projects for African American veterans in Yorktown Virginia, 1933. Courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration.

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    Civilian Conservation Corps, Third Corps Area: Yorktown, Virginia, Co. 1351- vocational projects for "colored veterans"
    • Creator
    • Roosevelt, Franklin D. (Franklin Delano), 1882-1945.
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    • Unrestricted
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    • National Archives and Records Administration
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    • Franklin D. Roosevelt Library

  • The Civilian Conservation Corps and Colored Youth, 1939. Courtesy of the New York State Library via Empire State Digital Network.

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    The Civilian Conservation Corps and colored youth / [compiled by Edgar G. Brown]. / 1939
    • Description
    • Edgar G. Brown, CCC Adviser on Negro Affairs for the Second National Conference on Problems of the Negro and Negro Youth, Washington, D.C., January 12-14, 1939"--T.p. verso. 5 p. ; 28 cm.
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      This document or image is provided for education and research purposes. Rights may be reserved. Responsibility for securing permissions to distribute, publish, reproduce or use it in any way rests with the user. For additional information, see the New York State Library's Copyright and Use Statement, available at http://www.nysl.nysed.gov/scandocs/rights.htm. less
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    • New York State Library

Because of prevailing racism, many of the CCC enrollment districts in southern states saw greater need to enroll unemployed white men and deliberately excluded black men from much-needed work opportunities. Many state and national selection agents for the CCC noted that there were greater percentages of white men enrolled than would be expected from the population figures of particular counties. W. Frank Persons, who was in charge of selection for the CCC, was the main administrator who dealt with selection issues for African Americans. He  raised questions and at times attempted to change the minds of local CCC selection agents.

When CCC camps were established, many local communities objected to the locations of the African American camps. The NAACP monitored and protested systemic CCC discrimination against African Americans. Generally the CCC director Fechner supported strict segregation, and, when faced with African American enrollment issues, decided to restrict African American enrollees in response. While the camps set in southern states were segregated, some northern camps incorporated black men, although they were seldom able to obtain the higher paying supervisory jobs of white men.

Despite segregation and exclusion, nearly all of the African American men who were selected took part in the additional educational opportunities provided to them by the program, gaining skills and job training in addition to the economic benefits associated with the work.