Camp Au Train Excavation 2019 - Passport in Time

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Michigan - Hiawatha NF
Closed! Camp Au Train CCC & POW Camp Archaeological Excavation

Camp_au_train.jpg by US Forest Service
Camp Au Train, 1933-1942

July 29-August 2, 2019

Volunteers must commit to entire session

Come on out to the beautiful Hiawatha National Forest this summer! Here, you’ll join archaeologists from the Industrial Heritage and Archaeology Program at Michigan Technological University and the Hiawatha to work at the historic Camp Au Train. Camp Au Train was established as a Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) camp in 1935 during the Great Depression (ca. 1929-1939). As one of many established camps for this federal public work relief program, Camp Au Train served as the home for numerous, unemployed young men as they engaged in conservation work in the central Upper Peninsula of Michigan from approximately 1933 to 1942. However, during the final years of World War II, the camp was re-purposed to house German prisoners of war (POWs) captured during Rommel’s failed Africa campaign. Camp Au Train was one of five POW camps located in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, and housed about 225 prisoners and 40 US troops while occupied from 1944 through 1946.

Our research at the Camp this year will focus on the everyday lives of both the CCC enrollees and the German POWs while they lived at Camp Au Train. PIT participants will map the site, engage in a metal detector survey around the Rec Hall and barracks, and excavate test units in the camp midden and near the mess hall. There is ample history to take in, and much to learn about this site, so we hope you’ll join us this July!

Number of openings: 12

Special skills: No special skills required

Minimum age: 12 years old, under 18 with a responsible adult

Facilities: Tent camping on-site at no charge; facilities on-site are primitive and dispersed, but the site is easily accessible by vehicles; water will be provided by FS; toilets provided by ‘Mother Nature;’ there are many nearby campgrounds; amenities may vary, and fees may apply; Munising is a full-service community with hotels/motels, restaurants, and a full range of other amenities; volunteers responsible for own lodging/camping equipment, meals, and daily transportation to work area (if opting to stay off-site)

Nearest towns: Chatham, ~7 miles; Munising, ~12 miles; Marquette, ~45 miles

Applications due: June 3, 2019

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