Civilian Conservation Corps, Company 777, Corydon, Sept. 4, 1940. Richard Frye of Corydon’s father, Dan Frye, was a CCC boy, pictured above, second row, fourth from right. While working at the CCC camp, Dan met his future bride Emma Hartsook. Emma’s family owned a café in Corydon.
When Eula Henderson started high school in Corydon in 1940, the Civilian Conservation Corps camp had already planted itself in Wayne County. It was located north of Highway 2, west of where the old Neely Manufacturing building stands. Most of the trees at Corydon Lake Park owe their existence to the camp.
“I certainly remember,” Henderson said. “At the time, country girls had to come to town to stay with an aunt and uncle or grandma or something, because there weren’t any buses. Nobody had cars. You didn’t go out riding around. I suppose those boys walked into town. I know us girls walked.
“On the south side of the square was The Big Dipper—it was an ice cream place. It was the west third of what’s Gambles now. It had a soda fountain and chairs and all that, and the back was partitioned off for a dance floor, and they had a jukebox.” May 16, 2016, 08:56
Bill Jamerson, above, will visit Prairie Trails Museum on May 24.
In the late 1930s, young men gathered in a camp near Corydon Lake Park. They planted trees, dug terraces and tilled the land. Around the country, these New Deal warriors of the Civilian Conservation Corps built America’s national parks and reconstructed themselves as valuable members of society, ready to lead their people out of the Great Depression.
On Tues., May 24 at 6:30 p.m., at the Prairie Trails Museum of Wayne County, CCC enthusiast and historian Bill Jamerson will travel to Corydon to help the community remember this too often forgotten past.
The personable Jamerson, who hails from the upper peninsula of Michigan, attempts to make the experience as real as possible for his audiences. It is the universal underdog story. May 9, 2016, 09:01
At Corydon’s Fourth of July pie auction, left to right, Devyn Buckley, Marjean Poston and Jane Poston Buckley. From her grandmother’s recipe, Devyn made a chocolate pie, bid on by her uncle, Jim Poston.
Something as simple as a small town Iowa poetry reading brings Jane Poston Buckley and her mother Marjean Poston together again in Corydon one night in April. At LeCompte Memorial Library, Buckley reads her work from the Beloit Poetry Journal, while Marjean reflects on her many years of teaching.
“There’s so much promise,” Buckley said of the young professionals and high school students who attended the gathering. “I think there’s so much that can happen. There were older writers there, with women who had grown up reciting poetry in country schools, and then young talents. I really wanted to hear their work and be taken back to the place where I started. It was an interesting journey. I feel a little bit like Persephone returning from hell." May 2, 2016, 09:18
Built in 1874, the Poston Law Office housed three generations of Poston attorneys. Photo by Jason Selby
LATE HUSBAND T.C. ‘DODE’ POSTON PRACTICED LAW IN SAME CORYDON BUILDING AS BOTH HIS FATHER AND GRANDFATHER
On a rainy day in southern Iowa, Marjean Poston sits in the sunroom her son John remodeled. She removes her glasses as if that will allow her to glimpse the past more clearly.
During a three-week trip home from Manhattan, Jane Poston Buckley digs up a photograph of her glamorous young mother channeling Audrey Hepburn in white-framed sunglasses, posing with her then 16-year-old daughter on a family vacation to Victoria Park, Canada. May 2, 2016, 09:16
David Hoffman holds a trumpeter swan above Seymour Elementary School students. Photo by Jason Selby
Trumpeter swans seem comfortable with David Hoffman. Despite an inborn fear of man, one of the huge birds allows Hoffman to wrap its neck around a Seymour Community Elementary School student. Toward the end of his presentation, the two female siblings finally get antsy to spread their wings and slush into Coffey Marsh.
On April 21, with the help of a large crowd, Hoffman released the swans into the wild.
“Don’t die!” one young student yelled to the gray ladies as a note of encouragement. Apr 26, 2016, 08:45