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Parkway South High Students help 'Save History'

Students from Parkway South High School recently helped choose historical artifacts that will be studied by students throughout Missouri and potentially nationwide. In doing so, they also hope to keep alive an important part of American history. Students in Liz Morrison's history classes visited the National Association of Civilian Conservation Corps Alumni Museum and Research Center on the grounds of Jefferson Barracks in South St. Louis County on Thursday. They looked through documents, letters, clothing and other artifacts from the organization that helped rebuild our country for ten years in the 1930s and 1940s. The South High students went through the items in small groups deciding which would be the most important for teachers and students to use when learning about the organization. As they discussed the items, they recorded why they chose the items they did, information that will allow Morrison to develop lesson plans revolving around the items. Ultimately, her plans and the items will travel the country going from school to school, providing future generations with an important history lesson about the important organization. The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) was established in July of 1933 and was a favorite project of President Franklin Roosevelt. During its existence, the CCC developed over 800 state parks and restored 3,980 historical structures. Through their efforts soil erosion was ultimately arrested on over 20 million acres. The CCC stocked over one billion fish and built 46,854 bridges and 4,622 fish rearing ponds, among other accomplishments. The CCC was comprised of young men who worked in every state plus Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. At its peak, over 600,000 men participated in the program. Morrison hopes that the project will bring attention to the CCC and the museum and research center, which has recently been in danger of closing. The South High project is being completed in conjunction with a National Council for the Social Studies grant through their "Christa McAuliffe Reach for the Stars Award" program and is part of The History Channel's "Save our History" program.