This Week In Quartermaster History
|On 21 March 1933, at the height of the Great Depression,
newly elected President Franklin Roosevelt sent a message to Congress urging creation of
the Civilian Conservation Corps a program to engage tens of thousands of unemployed
workers in forestry projects throughout the country. The bill became a law ten days later.
And in the years following the CCC was one of the largest and most successful governmental
The Quartermaster Corps role in this great endeavor was to supply the hastily mobilized "army" of domestic workers with food, clothing, equipment, and shelter, and to transport them to and from their work camps.
Enrollment began in April 1933 and by July nearly 300,000 were hard at work a force almost three times that of the Regular Army. It tested the very limits of QM logistical capabilities. Thousands of camps had to be constructed, millions of items of clothing and equipment purchased and distributed, along with food and rations. All of this while undertaking to carry out a "transcontinental movement of almost unparalleled proportions in peace time."
A small but potentially expansible Quartermaster Corps rose to the challenge, and more importantly, used the CCC experience to ready itself for an even greater challenge World War II.
Compiled by the
U.S. Army Quartermaster Corps Historian
Fort Lee, Virginia