Sandia Park CCC camps topic of history talk

Photo courtesy of Dirk Van Hart.

The history of two 1930s Civilian Conservation Corps camps in Sandia Park will be explored at 2 p.m. Jan. 17 at the historic church in Tijeras, as the East Mountain Historical Society hosts its first public program of the new year.

Presenter Dirk Van Hart promises to show “many photos” (such as the one shown here).

Photo courtesy of Dirk Van Hart.

Photo courtesy of Dirk Van Hart.

In 1998, using surveying equipment, Van Hart mapped the camps with the help of his wife and a friend and with the permission of the land’s current owner, the Campbell Ranch company. The first camp was established in 1933, a bit to the west of Tinkertown along the Crest Road. In 1935 a new campsite was established further east.

A geologist, Van Hart is president of the Civilian Conservation Corps alumni association’s Chapter 141, the only chapter of CCC alumni ever established in New Mexico. At one time there were more than 160 alumni chapters across the US, but today there are only about three.

The talk is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served and the society will be selling its 2016 East Mountains: Then and Now calendar at a discount.

The historic church is located just west of the library.

For more information about the all-volunteer East Mountain Historical Society, visit eastmountainhistory.org.