• Aransas National Wildlife Refuge - Austwell TX
    Aransas National Wildlife Refuge is a 114,657-acre, federally protected area at San Antonio Bay on the coast of Texas. The refuge was established by Executive Order 7784 on December 31, 1937 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt as the Aransas Migratory Waterfowl Refuge. The name was changed in 1939. It was created under the Bureau of Biological Survey and is administered today by the US Fish and Wildlife Service (created in 1940 from previous agencies). The refuge was set aside to protect the breeding grounds of migratory birds and the vanishing wildlife of coastal Texas. In particular, Aransas was the focal point of...
  • Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge - Virginia Beach VA
    The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) completed work at the Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge (also called Back Bay Migratory Waterfowl Refuge). The work was completed at this site by the CCC unit that resided at the nearby, but completely inland, Camp Pungo in what is now Virginia Beach. The original work extended from the Life-Saving/Coast Guard Station at Dam Neck, Virginia to the border with North Carolina well beyond its purchased property. Its most significant creation was the efforts to create a primary dune along the coast of Virginia to fashion an environment to protect wildfowl. Few original structures are remaining of...
  • Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge - Brigham City UT
    The Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge was created by Congress in 1928 to protect waterfowl on the flyway through the Great Salt Lake Basin.  It covers 80,000 acres of marshes, sloughs and uplands at the delta of the Bear River, flowing out of the northern Wasatch Mountains.  Early efforts to improve habitat and water quality for migratory birds in the 1920s had come to naught, so local hunters and conservationists sought the aid of the federal government.   The newly-renamed Bureau of Biological Survey took over management of all national wildlife refuges in 1933 under President Franklin Roosevelt, the number of...
  • Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge - San Antonio NM
    In 1936 the Bureau of Biological Survey (BBS) determined that Bosque del Apache site was suitable for a migratory bird refuge. Condemnation of the land was initiated through the 1931 Migratory Bird Conservation Act and concluded in December 1936. The landowner  was paid around $12/acre for about 57,000 acres. The refuge was formally established by executive order of President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1939. Between 1939 and 1942 the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and Work Progress Administration (WPA) sent in teams of relief workers to restore the refuge land under the guidance of the BBS, which became the US Fish &...
  • Camas National Wildlife Refuge - Hamer ID
    Camas National Wildlife Refuge lies in southeast Idaho along the Camas River and just west of the Grand Tetons of Wyoming.  Its 10,000 acres are half lakes, ponds, and marshlands and half grass sagebrush uplands, meadows, and farms.  It is a major viewing site for swans, geese and curlews, among other birds and wildlife. Camas NWF was created under the New Deal in 1937.  Lacking further details, we can only say it is likely to have been enacted by a presidential Executive Order and carried out by the Bureau of Biological Survey, as were most wildlife refuges of the New Deal....
  • CCC Camp - Valentine NE
    The Omaha World-Herald announced in the June 13, 1933 edition that Nebraska’s sixth Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Camp was approved in Washington D.C. and that it would be located near Valentine. Officials arrived in September to make arrangements for the establishment of the camp at the Federal Game Preserve, three miles east of town (the present Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge). The camp, as planned in 1933, would consist of seven buildings to provide comfortable quarters for the 200 men and camp officers who would reside there. The camp, designated for soil erosion projects, would house young men in barracks measuring...
  • Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge - Ellsworth NE
    Crescent Lake National Wildlife Refuge was created in 1931 under the Hoover Administration, but was not improved until President Franklin Roosevelt came into office in 1933. The refuge lies on the southwestern edge of the Sand Hills of Nebraska and it 45,000+ acres include one of the great wilderness areas of the NWR system. According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, “The earliest government actions on the Refuge were tree planting and small construction projects by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and the Works Projects Administration (WPA). The CCC built several buildings still in use today at the Refuge headquarters....
  • Farmington Bay Wildlife Management Area - Farmington UT
    Farmington Bay Wildlife Management Area is an 18,000 acre migratory bird refuge on the shore of the Great Salt Lake.  It began life as Farmington Bay State Park in the 1930s, when the Utah State Department of Fish and Game (now the State Division of Wildlife Resources) sought to transform the delta of the Jordan River into a wildlife refuge. The National Park Service (NPS) was brought in to assist the state in developing the area and, in turn, called on the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) to do the labor. The CCC set up Camp SP-2 on the shore of Farmington Bay...
  • Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge - Valentine NE
    Fort Niobrara NWR - Valentine NE Fort Niobrara Wildlife Refuge was established by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1912 by Executive Order.  The principal aim was to protect bison and elk herds which had dwindled almost to extinction under the pressure of market hunting in the 19th century.  It was created out of the old frontier Fort Niobrara and today covers almost 20,000 acres of grasslands and riparian forest in Nebraska. In October 1933, the CCC began work in the refuge. A number of projects were identified, including a big game fence measuring twenty-one miles, a seven mile four-wire stock fence, fire prevention...
  • Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge - Lakeview OR
    President Roosevelt signed an executive order on December 21, 1936 to establish the Hart Mountain Antelope Refuge in Lake County, Oregon. This area served the largest, remaining pronghorn antelope herd in the United States. Comprised of Hart Mountain and the surrounding desert range, the 215,516 acre refuge included property purchased from private owners as well as land in the public domain. Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) enrollees helped establish management of the antelope refuge through work conducted over several years. CCC Camp Hart Mountain operated from 1937 through 1939. CCC enrollees constructed new roads and improved the existing one, laid-out horse and...
  • La Torre de Piedra - Maricao PR
    The Civilian Conservation Corps built a viewpoint and picnic spot for travelers along Ruta Panoramica over the central mountains, in the vicinity of Maricao, PR.
  • Mattamuskeet Wildlife Refuge - Swanquarter NC
    Mattamuskeet Migratory Bird (later Wildlife) Refuge was established in 1934, primarily as a refuge for migratory birds along the Atlantic flyway.  It was one of the first refuges created under President Franklin Roosevelt, an ardent bird fancier and conservationist, and was assembled and administered by the Bureau of Biological Survey (reorganized into the Fish and Wildlife Service in 1940). The refuge is covers 50,000 acres on the Albemarle-Pamlico Peninsula in Hyde County, North Carolina.  It encompasses Mattamuskeet Lake, the largest natural lake in North Carolina, measuring 18 miles by 7 miles, but only 2-3 feet deep. The Mattamuskeet pumping station at the...
  • Medicine Lake National Wildlife Refuge - Medicine Lake MT
    Medicine Lake National Wildlife Refuge is located in northeastern Montana between the Missouri River and the Canadian border. Medicine Lake NWR encompasses 31,702 acres and consists of the 28,438-acre north tract, which includes Medicine Lake, and seventeen smaller water units. The Refuge was established in 1935 under the auspices of the Bureau of Biological Survey to provide breeding and stopover habitat for migratory birds.  The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and Works Progress Administration (WPA) sent workers in to improve the refuge under the direction of the Biological Survey (transformed into the US Fish & Wildlife Service in 1940). The WPA and CCC...
  • Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge - Seneca Falls NY
     In 1937 the Bureau of Biological Survey (from 1940, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) purchased 6,432 acres of the former Montezuma Marsh at the northern end of Cayuga Lake (one of the finger lakes of upstate New York).  In 1938, the Montezuma Migratory Bird Refuge was established by Executive Order 7971 to provide a refuge and breeding ground for migratory birds on the Atlantic Flyway. The name was changed to the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge in 1940.  Today, the refuge covered about 9,800 acres. The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) established a camp to work on this wildlife refuge, as it...
  • Muleshoe National Wildlife Refuge - Muleshoe TX
    President Franklin D. Roosevelt established the Muleshoe Migratory Waterfowl Refuge by executive order on October 24, 1935. In 1940 the name was changed to the Muleshoe National Wildlife Refuge. The original tract purchased for the refuge was 738 acres. The refuge is currently 6,440 acres. One of the primary purposes of the establishment of the refuge was to provide land that could be used to feed birds and thus reduce damage to commercial crops in the area. This would also decrease bird deaths by farmers protecting their crops from destruction. Additional benefits of building the refuge included providing a necessary link...
  • Patuxent Research Refuge - Laurel MD
    President Franklin Roosevelt created Patuxent Research Refuge (PRR) with Executive Order 7514, December 16, 1936, and Secretary of Agriculture Henry Wallace dedicated it on June 3, 1939.  The refuge began with 2,670 acres and has since grown to 12,841 acres. It is “the nation's only national wildlife refuge established to support wildlife research” (U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service). Several New Deal agencies helped to build the extensive facilities at the Patuxent Research Refuge. At the time, wildlife refuges came under the direction of the Bureau of Biological Survey (later merged into the Fish & Wildlife Service).  The Works Progress Administration (WPA)...
  • Roaches Run Waterfowl Sanctuary - Arlington VA
    In 1934-35, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) helped develop Roaches Run Waterfowl Sanctuary out of the marshes along the south shore of the Potomac River. Roaches Run  is located at the north end of National Airport, which was developed a few years later.  The CCC enrollees built a tidal gate between the lagoon and the river, cleared out brush and landscaped the area.  They built a parking lot for visitors and entry/exit roads from the George Washington Parkway, along with a trail around the lagoon.  A gamekeeper's cottage and feed storage unit were also added. The CCC crews presumably worked under...
  • Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge - Ruby Valley NV
    The Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge was created in 1938 by the administration of President Franklin D. Roosevelt for the protection of migratory birds and endemic species of the Basin and Range region.  It serves over 220 species of waterfowl and is the largest nesting area in the west for Canvasback ducks. The refuge covers about 38,000 acres, almost half of which consists of marshes created by springs drawing from aquifers coming out of the Ruby Mountains to the west.  The refuge lies at an elevation of 6,000 feet and mostly within Elko County NV, with the southern end in White...
  • Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge - Willows CA
    Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1937 by Executive Order of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. With funds from Emergency Conservation Fund Act of 1933, the Bureau of Biological Survey purchased the 10,775-acre Spalding Ranch to create what was originally called the Sacramento Migratory Waterfowl Refuge. Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) enrollees developed the refuge from 1937 to 1942, working out of Camp Sacramento at the present location of the refuge headquarters. Some of the original buildings may exist in the headquarters complex behind the visitors' center, but this has not been confirmed. Under the supervision of the Bureau of Biological Survey, the CCC...
  • Seney National Wildlife Refuge - Seney MI
    Seney National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1935 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt for the protection of migratory birds and other wildlife. It began under the Bureau of Biological Survey, which morphed into the US Fish & Wildlife Service in 1940. Under the reorganization all migratory bird preserves became national wildlife refuges. Seney NWR covers over 95,000 acres, of which 25,000 are wilderness.  The federal government purchased the land in the midst of the Great Depression because, as the official website puts it, "This is a land that was once heavily logged, burned, ditched, drained and cultivated. Despite repeated attempts, the...
  • Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge - Humboldt County NV
    The Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge was established in 1931 in the desert landscape of northern Nevada and eastern Oregon and enlarged by order of President Franklin Roosevelt in December 1936, under the auspices of the Bureau of Biological Survey (Fish and Wildlife Service after 1940).  It now covers 573,000 acres and is part of the Sheldon-Hart Mountain National Wildlife Refuge Complex, which is headquartered in Oregon.  It harbors one of the last reasonably intact examples of a sagebrush-steppe ecosystem in the Great Basin and is known for its populations of bighorn sheep, pronghorn antelope and wild mustangs (since removed). The Civilian...
  • St. Marks Wildlife Refuge Improvements - St. Marks FL
    What is today the St. Marks Wildlife Refuge was originally established in 1931 as the St. Marks Migratory Waterfowl Refuge, a key link in protecting the Atlantic flyway. It cover over 70,000 acres spread out between Wakulla, Jefferson, and Taylor counties in Florida and includes about 43 miles of the Gulf Coast. In the summer of 1933, Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Camp BF-1 was established near Newport to begin work on various improvements to the refuge under the auspices of the Bureau of Biological Survey (from 1940 the Fish & Wildlife Service). It was one of the few all African American camps...
  • Valentine National Wildlife Refuge - Valentine NE
    Valentine Migratory Waterfowl Refuge was established in 1935 by an Executive Order of President Franklin Roosevelt.  Some 70,000 acres of land in the Sand Hills of Cherry County, Nebraska were purchased by the Bureau of Biological Survey “as a breeding ground for migratory birds and other wildlife.”  The Nebraska Game Preserve and Fish Commission worked cooperatively with the Bureau of Biological Survey to bring the project to fruition. (The bureau morphed into the US Fish & Wildlife Service in 1940).  Valentine NWF is part of the Fort Niobrara/Valentine NWR complex, administered from Fort Niobrara NWR, along with the John and Louise...
  • Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge - Indiahoma OK
    Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge began in 1901 when part of the Comanche-Kiowa-Apache Indian Reservation was set aside as a National Forest. The area was transferred in 1935 to the Bureau of Biological Survey to become a wildlife refuge under the New Deal.   The 59,020 acre refuge hosts a rare piece of the past - a remnant mixed grass prairie, an island where the natural grasslands escaped destruction because the rocks underfoot defeated the plow.  It  provides habitat for large native grazing animals such as American bison and Rocky Mountain elk – both of which had been exterminated in this area...