Dress Uniforms 1933 - 1938

INTRODUCTION

The CCC dress uniform for the majority of the program's history was a two-part ensemble: a wool collared shirt and wool service trousers. However, the exact model and cut of these garments evolved in parallel with the program itself.

A NOTE ON "DRESS" VS "FIELD"

I label these garments as the CCC "dress uniform" to distinguish them from the blue denim work fatigues. That said, these "dress" woolens were routinely worn in the field. Whenever temperatures fell, the CCC boys would mix and match the "dress" woolen shirts and trousers in combinations with their denims and wear them on the job site.

MOBILIZATION YEARS: 1933-1935

DRESS SHIRT

"M1916/17"-STYLE STANDARD ENLISTED MAN'S SERVICE SHIRT

The standard CCC dress shirt of the mobilization years was the Pattern 1916/17 service shirt, a heavy wool-cotton flannel pullover with a partial placket ending at the belly.

This style of shirt was first adopted by the Army in 1905 and is ubiquitous in photos of soldiers on the Mexican Punitive Expedition of 1916-17 as well as the doughboys of WWI. Slight modifications to the basic design were adopted right before and during WWI in response to field experience and materials shortages, until the pattern stabilized on the 1916/1917 wartime model.

Shirts of this basic pattern remained Army standard issue until early 1935, which means that an individual CCC enrollee's shirt could have been made as long ago as 1918 or as recently as the month it was issued.

Despite its antiquated look the CCC boys found this shirt to be a very useful garment. Warm and breathable, with a loose cut for easy arm and torso motion, it made an ideal fall and spring work shirt. Photos of CCC enrollees wearing the wool service shirt with denim trousers for field work in the shoulder season are ubiquitous.

Reproduction M1916 shirt from What Price Glory.

Distinguishing features:

  • Pullover style with a three button partial-length placket front
  • Made from 8 ½ ounce or 9 ½ ounce olive drab shirting flannel composed of 80% wool and 20% cotton
  • Color varies but is usually around Olive Drab #7, an olive green
  • Rolling Collar
  • Olive drab or brown buttons
  • Two breast patch pockets with a straight (not rounded) bottom
  • Straight rectangular pocket flaps (not trimmed or scalloped) secured by a single button
  • After 1917 each pocket has a separate pencil/pen pocket
  • Elbow patch on each sleeve

WWI Doughboy brothers, ca. 1918. Source: World War I Nerd's post "U.S. Army Shirts 1900 to 1910" on the US Militaria Forum.

Two CCC enrollees in a nearly identical shirt. Undated, but tent in the background strongly suggests 1933 or early 1934; by summer of 1934 nearly all camps had moved out of tents and into wooden barracks. Source: Oregon State University Special Collections & Archives, Gerald W. Williams Collection, Digital Collection Identifier gwilliams308.

EXPEDIENT SHIRT: US MARINE CORPS PATTERN

The Army seemed to have almost enough M1916/17-style standard shirts to outfit the CCC in its early days--almost, but not quite.

The young enrollee below, from Camp Morton, CCC Company 341, S-104-Pa, in Benton, Pa., is wearing a dress shirt which has a fully-opening placket and two breast pockets with deeply scalloped pocket flaps. Though it matches no known US Army pattern, it is a dead ringer for the contemporary US Marine Corps wool service shirt.

This is a delightful find. Under ordinary circumstances, the prewar Regular Army would rather have died than be caught issuing a uniform item from their hated rival, the Navy Department's Marine Corps. Well, circumstances alter cases. This photograph suggests that at least for a brief time in 1934 or 35 the Quartermaster Corps was so desperate for wool service shirts that it bought Marine Corps patterns for issue to the CCC.

Enrollee in mystery shirt, Camp Morton, CCC Company 341, S-104-Pa, Benton, Pa. Credit: Collection of Charles Libby, reproduced in article "CCC camps helped families overcome economic hardships stemming from the Great Depression" by Cara Morninstar, Williamsport Sun-Gazette, October 16, 2017.

Original USMC wool service shirt for comparison. Source: 44th Collectors Avenue.

EXPEDIENT SHIRTS: CIVILIAN WOOL WORK SHIRTS, SERVICE SHIRT STYLE

When it came to shirts, the boys of Camp Morton seem to have been the lucky recipients not only of Marine Corps patterns, but of every other expedient in the Quartermaster Corps' bag of tricks.

Below are two other boys from the same unit in the same image:

The boy on the left wears a shirt with a partial placket similar to the M1916/17 pullover, but also the signature beveled pocket flaps of the new "M1933" 8-26C coat-style shirt to be discussed below. His mate on the right wears a shirt with the opposite combination: square pocket flaps but a fully-opening placket.

Both these shirts are most likely off-the-rack civilian work wear. Throughout the interwar period civilian clothing manufactures offered work shirts to the civilian market which were closely patterned on military service shirt designs. These civilian shirts followed the general plan of a service shirt, including the felted wool fabric and signature large breast pockets, but were not stitch for stitch duplicates of any single military pattern.

During the crash mobilization of 1933-34, the Quartermaster Corps seems to have been willing to buy for the CCC any olive drab field shirt in a more or less military style, whatever shirtmakers could make quickly.

Below is an example of one such shirt: a grey civilian wool field shirt of 1920s or 1930s vintage from an unknown manufacturer. Overall, the shirt faithfully follows the plan of the M1916/17 military service shirt. However, several subtle differences show it is not made exactly to the military pattern. The partial placket extends further down the front than a real QMC contract shirt, the point of the placket end is more acute, and the collar includes the chin strap popular in civilian dress shirts and chambray work shirts. The pockets are 1/2" wider that the 1917 spec, a full 6" rather than 5.5", lack the pencil pocket stitch, and are single rather the double stitched around the edge. The sleeve cuff plackets extends up to and under the oval elbow patch rather than terminating short of it.

Despite such variations in detail from the true QMC spec, such a shirt (albeit in olive drab or khaki) would have been more than acceptable for CCC issue in 1933 or 1934.

Two images, civilian work shirt loosely patterned on M1916/7 service shirt. Note deeper partial placket with sharper terminal point, wider patch pockets affixed with a single stich, chin strap, and sleeve placket extending up and under the larger elbow reeforcement patch. Despite these differences from the true military pattern, a shirt like this in olive drab or khaki would have been entirely acceptable for CCC issue in 1933 or 1934. Credit: collection of the author.

DRESS TROUSERS

From 1933 to 1938, the CCC dress pant was an olive-drab, straight-leg trouser made of heavy, field-grade wool.

Though the QMC had adopted a modern wool trouser specification in 1930, soldiers remained overwhelmingly loyal to flared breeches, which were thought to convey a more military appearance. Indeed, the only troops for whom pants rather than breeches were standard issue in 1933 were officer cadets in ROTC at civilian colleges.

With but a few of the limited-issue ROTC-pattern trousers in stock, the Quartermaster faced a dire challenging in outfitting 250,000 CCC boys in wool pants by midsummer of 1933.

Salvation came in the form of a trove of World War I-surplus field trousers. For all of 1933 and into 1934, the Quartermaster Corps uniformed the CCC almost entirely from this cache of fifteen year old deadstock.

Soldiers in breeches training for World War I; Fort Myer Training Camp, 1917. Source: Harris & Ewing via old-pcture.com.

BACKGROUNDER -- ARMY BREECHES

The standard military pant from WWI until 1938 was wool breeches (pronounced britches by the troops), not trousers. Breeches or jodphurs are a cavalry-styled pant with a dramatic flair at the hips narrowing below the knee to a trim leg ending in a laced cinch at the lower calf.

Breeches were developed for horseback riding in the 19th century. The wide cut of the fabric at the hips allowed for flexing the torso in any direction from a curled, crouched or seated position. By the Great War the style had spread to dismounted troops as well. Foot soldiers' breeches originally could be distinguished from their cavalry antecedents by a somewhat more trim cut through the hips. By the middle 1920s, however, the Army was issuing a single pattern to both mounted and dismounted troops.

The Regular Army remained devoted to breeches well into the 1930s, and would not complete the process of retiring them until the sweeping 1937 uniform revisions adopted prior to World War II.

Equipping the CCC with trousers not breeches was likely a conscious decision intended to emphasize the 3C's civilian rather than military character.

"M1918" WORLD WAR I FIELD TROUSER

M1918 WWI wool trousers on a CCC enrollee, Camp Morton, CCC Company 341, S-104-Pa, Benton, Pa. Source: Collection of Charles Libby, reproduced in Williamsport Sun-Gazette, October 16, 2017.

Same image, detail of front pocket.

Original M1918 trousers, side view. Source: World War I Nerd's post in the topic "Were Puttees Worn With Trousers?" in the US Militaria Forum.

The deadstock Pattern 1918 wool trousers that saved the Quartermaster Corps in 1933 were an emergency solution to a World War I production crisis. With their complex shape and stitching, military breeches did not lend themselves to mass production. As the pace of US mobilization accelerated, a shortage of breeches threatened to become a bottleneck in equipping the millions of American troops forming up in stateside training camps for deployment to France. The solution was to switch the combat pant to a trouser design with simplified fabric panels and stitching patterns.

Designed for winter trench warfare, the resulting M1918 trouser was a heavyweight field pant not lightweight garrison wear. The fabric was the same heavy 16 oz. Melton cloth used to make the World War I service coat. The color was olive drab, which in 1918 meant a greenish-brown hue. Notable features include:

  • Diagonal slash hanging pockets on the front, the upper end of which stops just short of a belt loop
  • A vertical line of overlapped fabric with seam stitching carried from the upper corner of the front pocket up across the waist
  • Horizontal slash rear hanging pockets
  • A horizontal slit hanging watch pocket.
  • A four or five button fly (five buttons for size 36 and larger). The buttons are stamped "US Army"and made of zinc, similar to the zinc buttons often used on fatigue denims.
  • A straight "peg leg" intended to be wrapped in puttees or covered by canvas leggings in the same manner as were breeches.

In a footnote buried in her QMC Historical Series No. 16, Erna Risch notes a striking line item in the 1919 inventory report of the Quartermaster General:

"In this statement are listed 7,196,885 wool trousers, actual deliveries of which did not begin until June 3, 1918. It would seem unlikely that any trousers reached the enlisted man in Europe before the end of the war."

The enormous number ordered suggests that the Quartermaster very much intended to issue them to soldiers deploying the the front in late 1918 and 1919. After the November 1918 Armistice, however, the Regular Army turned its nose up at these rough woolen trousers in favor of its beloved breeches. Unissued and unwanted, the M1918 trousers languished in Quartermaster Depot warehouses until the QMC turned them over to the CCC in 1933 and 1934.

The CCC boys loathed the fit of the M1918s and complained of them vociferously. The tight fit of the seat and the straight trouser leg below the knee seemed to be a particular sticking point. Enrollee Henry E. Beck of Durand, Wisconsin, who joined up in October 1935, recalled

"Olive Drab (O.D.) shirts and pants of solid wool were, like the rest, of WWI issue. The shirts fit well but the pants with very narrow bottoms were something else."

Illinois CCC historian Kay Rippelmeyer notes that

"Clifford Johnson remembered the early years at Camp Hicks and the old army-issue khaki* pants. The boys called them 'blanket pants' because the would cut off six inch wide strips (from somebody else's blanket) and take them home to their mothers to sew on the bottom hems of the pant legs to make 'bell bottoms.'" *Note--the pants were olive drab not khaki; civilian historians often confuse the two terms.

Utah journalist Helen Garder recorded a similar account:

"Blanche Fowler of St. George remembers one seemingly insignificant quirk of fate that changed some local history and the economy during the CCC years. It was the issuing of outdated World War I army uniforms to the men in the CCC. These were the cause of many of the young men becoming acquainted with the families and young ladies around the camps. The men heartily disliked the peg-legged wool army pants issued to them as part of their uniform. Someone figured that if a triangle of material was inserted at the bottom of each pant leg, it made the army-issue trousers look more like the fashionable sailor's bell bottoms. Soon, thriving cottage industry was going on in many of the small towns where the camps were located. The charge for the insert was a quarter for each pair of pants. During the 1930s, twenty-five cents was almost a day's wage."

Detail of the same original pair of M1918s as at left -- note the distinctive overlapped fabric with vertical stitching extending from the front pocket top corner to the waistline, and compare to the detail view of the CCC trouser pocket above left.

CCC enrollees in Mendora, ND. Note unmistakable dart-shaped insert to convert pants to bell bottoms. Source: State Historical Society of North Dakota.

EXPEDIENT: ENLISTED MAN'S DISMOUNTED BREECHES

Enrollees at Camp S-51, Groton State Forest, Massachusetts, December 1935. The boy in the center appears to be wearing breeches with vertical side seam pockets (not visible). Source: "A Legacy of Forests and Parks: The Civilian Conservation Corps" at Northernwoodlands.com.

Enrollee R. H. “Hap” Radloff (l) and an unidentified friend (r), Camp 1754, McGregor, Iowa ca. 1935. The friend is certainly wearing breeches; Radloff may be wearing breeches with a modest hip flare or may simply be blousing trousers into his boots. Source: Radloff collection at Iowa GenWeb.

While the M1918s were the most common early CCC wool pant, photographs suggest that some enrollees were issued US Army enlisted man's wool breeches.

This may have been more common at CCC companies in colder states, as the breeches bloused more easily into arctic overshoes or shoepacs for wintertime field wear.

For now, I can offer no further information as to the model or era of breeches issued to the CCC.

PEAK YEARS: 1936-1938

In late 1935 the Civilian Conservation Corps reached the largest size it would ever attain. By the end of that year there were over 2,650 camps operating in all 48 states plus the territories of Hawaii, Alaska and Puerto Rico. 505,782 enrollees occupied these camps, with other categories, such as officers, supervisors, education advisors and administrators swelling the total to more than 600,000 persons.

From this peak President Roosevelt directed a gradual draw down, ordering Director Fechner to plan on reducing enrollment to 300,000 by 1938.

With enrollment stabilized, the Quartermaster Corps could impose order on outfitting the Corps. From 1936 onward, the boys would be uniformed according to the same standards, and using the same patterns, as the contemporary Army itself.

DRESS SHIRT

SHIRT: "M1933" SHIRT, WOOL, OD, ENLISTED MAN'S, QM SPECIFICATION 8-26C DATED 4 OCTOBER 1933

8-26C shirt on an Assistant Leader at at Camp Crawford, Elizabeth, Wirt County, W. Va. Source: Evans Collection, West Virginia and Regional History Center, IDNO: 017887.

In October 1933 the Quartermaster Corps belatedly finalized a specification for a new service shirt to replace the venerable WWI wool pullover shirt. The new garment would be coat-styled, which is Quartermaster-speak for fully opening in the front. Generally known as Pattern 1933, the new shirt became standard issue for the Army around the winter of 1934/1935. It seems to have been phased in simultaneously as the standard service shirt for the CCC.

Given its prominent place in CCC footlockers, the M1933 shirt is worth exploring in some detail. World War II clothing historian Charles Lemons provides an excellent description of its features in his book Uniforms of the US Army Ground Forces 1939-1945, Volume 3, Shirts:

"Shirt, Wool, Enlisted Man's

USA Specification 8-26C

Pattern Date: 4 October 1933

This shirt is constructed of a heavy, olive drab wool with two breast pockets and long sleeves. Both pockets have beveled pocket flaps... . The breast pockets are quite wide (7") compared to the later patterns of enlisted men's wool shirts, which are 6" wide. In addition, each of the pockets is equipped with a 3 1/2 inch wide pencil pocket set towards the centerline of the shirt. The front of the shirt closes with seven brown plastic buttons, and the cuffs are each closed with a single button. The buttonholes are reinforced by 1 1/4" wide decorative facing sewn down the front of the shirt and along each cuff opening. ... On each of the elbows is an added oblong wool patch for reinforcement."

Original Specification 8-26C CCC dress shirt. Clockwise from top left: overall view; detail of oblong elbow to cuff reinforcement; QM tag with contract number W669 ECF 515 dated 1-16-35, detail of pocket with beveled flap edges, detail of collar showing double stitching. Source: collection of the author.

SHIRT: "M1937"

SHIRT, COAT STYLE, WOOL, OD, QM SPECIFICATION 8-108

SHIRT, COAT STYLE, FLANNEL, OD, QM SPECIFICATION 8-108 AMENDMENT 1

"M1937"-style shirt on a Section Leader, Camp Charleston, Coles County, Illinois, 1940. Source: Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site's CCC Flickr page.

In 1937 the Quartermaster Corps undertook a sweeping reorganization and redesign of the Army's service uniform system. Most of these changes came too late to influence CCC clothing, but the new "M1937" coat-style wool shirt definitely did see CCC service in both olive drab winter wool or flannel and summer cotton khaki versions.

Essentially an update to the 1933 pattern, the 1937 version was visually very similar, retaining the signature double breast pockets with beveled pocket flaps. The pockets became one inch smaller -- 6" wide rather than 7" -- and lost their internal pencil divider. The 1937 shirt also deleted the sleeve reenforcing patch and simplified the collar and pocket stitching. Fabric could be felted wool as in the M1933 version, or a new, lighter worsted wool which had a somewhat ridged appearance on close inspection.

A nearly identical shirt in mid-weight khaki cotton fabric was released for tropical use in 1936. The cotton khaki shirt seems to have been issued as a summer dress shirt to CCC camps in hot climates from perhaps 1937 or 1938 onward; this "suntan" shirt is discussed in the next section.

Four views of an original M1937 Olive Drab wool shirt. Clockwise from upper left: overall view, detail of collar with single stitch hem, 6" wide pocket without pencil pocket stitching, and lack of elbow reenforcing patch. Source: Uniforms of the US Army Ground Forces 1939-1945, Volume 3, Shirts, by Charles Lemons, pages 15-19.

DRESS TROUSERS

TROUSERS: "M1930" TROUSERS, ENLISTED MEN'S, SERVICE, OLIVE DRAB, QM SPECIFICATION 8-83A - CCC SPECIFIC VARIANT OD-33 / 20 OZ. MELTON WOOL

M1930-style trousers on a CCC enrollee, Camp Morton, CCC Company 341, S-104-Pa, Benton, Pa. Source: Collection of Charles Libby, reproduced in Williamsport Sun-Gazette, October 16, 2017.

The Army Quartermaster Corps long remembered the swift rejection of the Pattern 1918 wool trousers by the field forces, which resulted in several million pairs of wartime trousers languishing in the stockrooms. Not until a decade had passed did the Quartermaster Corps take a second crack at designing a wool service trouser. The result was Pattern 8-83, approved on April 7, 1930.

The design was modeled on civilian suit trousers of the time and featured a high waist, close fitting seat, and fuller legs. In 1933 the design was slightly modified (Specification 8-83A), and on 14 May 1934 a tentative specification was issued for a type made in heavy, almost coat-grade 20 oz. melton wool to be made in quantity for use by members of the Emergency Conservation Work force -- i.e., the CCC.

These 20-oz. Melton wool variants are the archetypical CCC dress pants of the peak years of the Corps: a heavyweight, CCC-only trouser intended to serve as a winter field work pant as well as a dress pant.

Notable features of the CCC-specific 8-83As include a dark, almost chocolate brown color, Olive Drab 33 in the Quartermaster dye chart--a notable contrast to the greenish-brown OD shade of the old M1918s. The new pants had vertical slash hanging pockets with the entrance on the side hemline, two rear hanging pockets without flaps, and a slit hanging watch pocket below the belt line. The button fly was closed with five buttons, with the waist button exposed and the rest hidden. Buttons for the 20-oz. CCC-issue version were brown plastic.

Three views of the 8-83A service trouser in the dark, OD-33 shade also used by the CCC. Note vertical entrance of front pockets on the side hemline, simple hanging rear pockets without flaps or buttons, and trim cut of the seat. Source: Private collection of Christopher Reuscher, from page "Trousers, Enlisted Men's, Service, Olive Drab, Specification QMC 8-83 Dated 7 April 1930" in website United States Military Uniforms of World War II by Christopher Reuscher.

ACCESSORIES

HEADGEAR

CAMPAIGN HAT

WWI Doughboy brothers wearing Campaign Hats, ca. 1918. Source: World War I Nerd's "U.S. Army Shirts 1900 to 1910" on the US Militaria Forum.

The Campaign Hat (aka the "Park Ranger hat" or "Smokey Bear") was a cherished icon of the Regular Army. Though it appears frequently in CCC images, the campaign hat is invariably the headgear of a supervisory figure, either an Army camp commandant or a civilian project manager from the US Forest Service or National Park Service. There are many "clowing around" pictures of CCC boys playing dress-up in a borrowed supervisor's Campaign Hat, but do not be mislead--at no time were rank-and-file CCC enrollees issued campaign hats as part of their own kit.

Army command staff of CCC camp P-63, Company 1431, in Bronson, Florida, 1933. Source: Florida State Library and Archives.

OVERSEAS CAP, M1918

African-American troops on the way to France at dockside in an English transition port; all wear the 1918 Overseas Cap. Source: detail taken from New York Times archive photo.

CCC enrollees in 1935 sporting the same cap. Credit: CCC District E Annual, Company 3489, Crosby, Mississippi, 1935, Source: KCET.

When the Army deployed to France in 1917 it took with it with the beloved Campaign Hat. However, the doughboys soon learned that their iconic headgear was completely unsuitable for trench warfare. Steel helmets were a necessity for survival in the trenches; where and how to store an entire platoon or company's stiff-brimmed campaign hats when the boys donned helmets to move up to the front was an insuperable problem.

The solution was to adopt the soft, low-profile, fore-and-aft wool "trench cap" in use by our allies. Such caps could be folded and tucked into a pocket when helmets had to be donned. Initially US doughboys wore a bewildering variety of French- and British- made caps. By mid-1918 a standardized US-designed olive drab wool cap was becoming widely available--examples of which are sported by the African-American doughboys in England shown at left.

Immediately after the armistice the Army reverted right back to its beloved Campaign Hat. However, the M1918 "Overseas Cap" remained in the US Army inventory throughout the interwar years as an optional item. In a strange back-formation, it became known stateside as a "Garrison Cap," as it tended be worn on post, while the Campaign Hat still ruled in the field.

The ready availability of the M1918-style overseas cap made it a natural choice for the CCC dress uniform. A cap was issued without fail to every CCC enrollee as part of his initial outfit. Many of these caps were actual WW1-era deadstock, but some were of new manufacture.

In practice, the CCC boys' caps seem to have spent most of their lives in footlockers, coming out only for formal group portraits and Saturday night dances in nearby towns.

Original CCC overseas cap, right and left sides. The cap was issued plain; the patch and pin are private purchase items available from the camp commisary or any number of mail-order catalogs. Source: collection of Garth Thompson, posted to topic "Civilian Conservation Corps" in US Militaria Forum.

NECKWEAR

1918 "PERSHING TIE"

Prior to 1926 a necktie was not a standard part of the US Army enlisted man's uniform. Before that year, the Army service uniform included a coat with a stiff, standing "choker" collar. As the coat was to be worn on all occasions when a tie would be appropriate, and the high collar of the coat would have completely concealed a tie had one been worn, it followed that none was actually needed.

The only exception to this rule came during the vast wartime expansion of the Army staff during World War I. At every level of command, from divisions up through corps and armies, enlisted men were assigned to headquarters staffs as clerks and orderlies. These were desk-bound jobs, and the men wore shirtsleeves for the indoor work. General John "Black Jack" Pershing, the Allied Expeditionary Force high commander, was a stickler for a sharp military appearance. He found the sight of all these military shirts without a tie a loathsome deviation from good order and discipline. Ties were demanded for the staff enlisted men, and the Quartermaster Corps obliged with an emergency order of black cravats in a simple rough silk.

Army tradition of the day dictated that the tie be tucked into the shirt placket between the first and second button, not worn loose. Rather than waste precious silk fabric on a tie end that, by regulation, was never supposed to be seen, the Quartermaster Corps cut the tie off short and square.

These ties, called Pershings after their progenitor, were manufactured in large numbers for the vast American army that was to have taken the field in 1919. However, they were never a part of the standard enlisted uniform outside the war zone, and most of the production was never issued. They remained in Quartermaster Depots until called forth to provided a ready dress tie for the CCC in the mobilization years of 1933-34.

Our WWI Doughboy brothers, again, now modelling for us the Pershing Tie.

The same tie on the CCC boys of Camp Morton. The slight horizontal crinkle in the tie fabric is a sure sign of the Pershing, even if its distinctive square end is tucked properly out of sight.

NECKTIE, SILK, BLACK, M1926 and M1936, SPECIFICATION 7-1D

NECKTIE, WORSTED WOOL, BLACK, SPECIFICATION 8-119

As noted above, in 1926 the Army modified the design of the standard service coat. The new design included a falling collar and notched lapels in the same manner as a conventional civilian business suit.

As the collar of the shirt was now exposed, the Quartermaster Corps specified that a tie would be part of the post-1926 enlisted service uniform. As updated in a specification of 1936, the enlisted man's tie was a narrow black silk cravat, 49 1/2" to 50" long, 3 1/2 " wide at the widest end, 1" at the neck, and 2 3/8" at the narrower end.

As soon as supplies of the Pershing were exhausted, the US Army black silk enlisted tie became standard issue for the CCC as well.

With the approach of World War II, silk became a strategic material for manufacturing parachutes. To conserve silk the Quartermaster Corps switched the tie material to worsted wool in 1940. Dimensions remained the same. CCC issue ties likely switched to wool at the same time.

Camp Charleston, Illinois Leaders and Assistant Leaders in dress uniform with standard black service tie, 1940. Source: Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site's CCC Flickr page.

BELT

BELT, WAIST, WEB, COTTON, OD, OLD TYPE

CCC enrollees were issued a single belt for both work and dress wear: a standard US Army web belt. Dating back to a 1910 design, this belt was issued without change until World War II.

Often called "khaki," the webbing color was actually OD-3, a very light olive drab. Light OD shades were notoriously susceptible to die variations between and within runs, so actual color could range from light tan to dark khaki, usually with a slight greenish tint. The belt was 1" wide, smaller than the 1 1/4" web belts ubiquitous in modern surplus stores.

The belt was issued with two buckles. Enlisted men were issued an open-faced, blackened metal locking buckle. Officers were issued a solid-faced, brass, sliding friction lock buckle identical to those still in use on military and boy scouting belts.

Interestingly, the officers' and enlisted buckles were issued randomly to CCC enrollees. Historical images suggest that the officers' style may in fact have been slightly more common in the camps.

It should also be noted that enrollees routinely wore their personal belts during the workday. Many enrollees seem to have strongly preferred a sturdy leather belt to the issued web belt, perhaps because it was far less likely to roll when bending. This practice of wearing personal belts seems to have been universally tolerated, and private belts make up between a third and half the belts in any group image of a CCC work party. It also seems to have been a fad or fashion to wear one's personal belt with the buckle offset rakishly a loop or so from center.

Enrollee wearing the standard web belt in a fairly dark shade with the enlisted-style, open frame blackened brass buckle. Date and location unknown.

The Camp Charleston leaders are wearing light shade web belts with the officers' style solid-face brass buckle. Source: Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site's CCC Flickr page.

DRESS UNIFORM IMAGE GALLERY

The boys of Camp Morton, CCC Company 341, S-104-Pa, Benton, Pa. This is a Rosetta Stone image for mobilization-era CCC dress uniform parts. In this image you can find 1918 WWI wool trousers next to brand-new 1930s-era 8-83As, and M1916-17 wool pullovers next to Marine Corps pattern dress shirts. Some shirts have a bizarre combination of features: 1930s-style notched pocket flaps with a 1917-style partial-front placket, or vice versa. Neither combination conforms to any known QMC standard. Source: Collection of Charles Libby, reproduced in Williamsport Sun-Gazette, October 16, 2017.

New enrollee John Boling from Ohio is wearing breeches and canvas leggings with what appears to be the M1916/17 shirt. Camp Lee, Company 532, SP-6, Clifftop West Virginia, ca. 1935. Source: West Virginia CCC Legacy.

Mockingly labelled "A Rookie" this image seems to show an over-eager new enrollee still wearing the canvas leggings issued in his conditioning camp. He is wearing the 8-26C coat-style shirt with WWI Field trousers. Bizarrely, he has topped off his dress uniform with a denim Daisy Mae. Camp Cranberry, Cowen, West Virginia. Source: West Virginia & Regional History Center ID No. 047803.

More breeches and leggings, this time worn by Arnold Benson of Camp Hill City, Newton Lake, in the Black Hills of South Dakota, 1935. Benson is "playing soldier" with a borrowed officer or civilian's rifle. This image would have given CCC Director Fechner a heart attack--the CCC was emphatically a civilian program, and training the boys in the manual of arms with military weapons was strictly prohibited. Source: Arnold Benson Collection, Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Museum of South Dakota.

A nice example of M1916/17 pullover wool shirts mixed in among denim jumpers for work wear. CCC crew in Yellowstone National Park, 1930s. Source: Wyoming State Archives via article "Hard Times and Conservation: the CCC in Wyoming" in wyohistory.org.

More M1916/17 pullovers as work wear. The boy third from left has his wool shirt untucked, showing the deep, thigh length front and rear shirttails of the WWI pullover. CCC crew poses at Mount Rainier National Park, 1933-1935. Source: National Park Service photograph by Natt N. Dodge: Negative Number 86-102.

Detail from a 1934 image of boys at the Fort Knox induction camp. Most of these leggings will be tossed in a footlocker and never worn again once these boys arrive at their permanent companies. The shirts seem to be mostly M1916/17 pullovers with square pocket flaps, but some, like those on the boys furthest right end of the first and second rows, seem to show the beveled pocket flaps of the coat-style 8-26Cs. The odd hybid shirts with M1916-style partial plackets but 1930s style beveled pocket flaps may also be in the mix. Source: post "Raising and Deploying a Conservation Army" in the Forest Army blog.

Looking cool in the new 8-26Cs with the beveled pocket flaps and fully-opening coat-style placket. A group of young CCC enrollees at Chittenden Nursery in Manistee National Forest, 1935. Source: Forest History Society Photograph Collection, R9_MAN1935CCC_Chitt_1352.

Enrollees pose in the education building at a camp outside Huntsville, Alabama, nicely turned out in 8-26C coat-style shirts. Some of the trousers look like they may have received the unauthorized bell bottom modification. Source: U.S. Forest Service via The Encyclopedia of Alabama.

M1916/17 pullovers worn as work shirts with denim trousers and Daisy Maes. The vintage colorization in this photograph is dead on accurate. Work crew of CCC Company 288 in the 1930s at Fort Hancock, New Jersey. Source: NPS Fort Hancock website.

Wearing the late thirties standard 8-108 shirt and 8-83-style trousers with sullen expression. Camp Deer Lake, Company 1722, Itasca County, Minnesota, 1938. Source: Norman Gustafson Civilian Conservation Corps photographic collection 2002.4017.11, Iron Range Research Center.