Arizona - Coronado NF
Mending Fences and Playing in the Mud at Historic Camp Rucker
Barn at Historic Camp Rucker
August 15-20, 2021 (including weekends)
Volunteers must commit to entire session
Join us on the Coronado National Forest this summer as we “stabilize the past” at Historic Camp Rucker! Camp Rucker was established as a military outpost on the western slopes of the Chiricahuas in the spring of 1878, and served and housed troops from the Sixth Cavalry and the Twelfth Infantry. It was also a base of operations and a supply depot for two companies of Indian Scouts patrolling southeastern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico during the times of open hostility between the Apache and Euro-American settlers. The historic site contains components of three distinct (though often overlapping) occupations: earlier Native American habitation; 19th-century United States military; and later ranching settlements. In 1880, Camp Rucker was abolished as a permanent military outpost and became a ranch that passed through several owners. Coronado National Forest acquired the property through a land exchange in 1970.
Stabilization work at the site began in 1973. Since then, many of the buildings have been stabilized and an interpretive trail was established; extensive documentation of features and artifacts was also completed at Camp Rucker and the surrounding area. Thirteen historic and five prehistoric sites are listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) as the Rucker Canyon Archaeological District.
Join us this season as we continue preservation and stabilization work at this unique and significant site, which embodies military, ranching, and Native American history. Tasks to be completed this session include: stabilizing a two-room adobe structure and other adobe buildings that were the bakery and commissary for the military camp; realigning and clearing vegetation from the interpretative trails throughout the site; reconstructing stockade-style corral fences; repairing a door on the barn; and performing maintenance on the ranch house. There may also be an opportunity to help rehabilitate a CCC-era structure nearby.
Please note: Strict COVID-19 protocols will be followed, including the wearing of masks, social distancing, etc. Additionally, given current national and global circumstances, some aspects of the project may be subject to change. The project leader will notify all selectees should this occur.
Please plan to arrive on Sunday. Work will begin at 8:00 a.m. Monday morning.
Number of openings: 15
Special skills: Previous construction, carpentry, general grounds-keeping, adobe masonry, and/or restoration skills helpful, but not required
Minimum age: 10 years old; applicants under the age of 18 must apply with a parent or guardian; guardian MUST submit a separate application and plan to attend
Facilities: Camp Rucker Campground is approximately one (1) mile from the project area. Amenities include eight picnic tables, fire grills, two ramadas, bear-proof trash containers, and vault toilets. There is no water at the campground itself, but potable water is available at the Rucker Administrative site (2.5 miles from project, 1.5 miles from campground). Camper trailers less than 16 feet are permitted, however, the campground is a group site, so there are no pull-in or pull-through sites and there are no hook-ups. Fees will be waived for volunteers Sunday night through Friday morning. Three (3) RV pads with hook-ups may be available at the Rucker Administrative site on a first-come-first-served basis; fees will apply for use of the pads; an RV park (Sandy’s Restaurant and RV Park) is located in Sunizona, (~ 30 miles, or, about a one-hour drive each way from the project location); volunteers responsible for own camping equipment/lodging, meals, water, and transportation (and, if using RV pads at Admin site, all associated hook-up and usage fees)
Nearest towns: Project based in Rucker Canyon, Coronado NF; Sunizona, ~30 miles; Douglas, 37 miles
Applications due: June 7, 2021