Life at Camp Moran

No Girls Allowed

The men of Camp Moran led rich lives while living in camp

Working for the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) had its advantages and Camp Moran was no exception. The CCC wanted to give the men every opportunity to improve themselves, both physically and mentally. Life in camp included recreation like baseball and “picture shows” as well as educational opportunities. This was on top of the steady paycheck, about 30 dollars a month, in an unsteady economy.

Camp Moran boasted a recreational hall, swimming and boating facilities, sporting equipment and fields, fishing opportunities, religious services, and an educational center. Camp leadership even offered ferry services/privileges on weekends and special occasions to Bellingham.

A highlight for the men was playing on the Camp Moran baseball team. They would play against other camp teams and local towns’ teams. Competition and team pride were fierce. The men had favorites and even made under the table bets on the projected winners, much like many sports fans today.

Another high point for the men of Camp Moran was the bi-monthly movie showing in the recreation hall. Newsreels were shown along with full-length feature films, like King Kong. There was also a local place to watch films in Eastsound.

In the education center, Camp Moran held classes of all kinds. If an enrollee did not have a high school diploma, they would be able to earn it while at camp. Along with school classes, Camp Moran offered classes to build men’s skills like woodworking and welding, as well as softer skills like cooking or typing, even photography. Camp Moran taught classes in leadership, too. The camp had a well-equipped library with about 3,000 volumes and a ten-desk writing center.

Camp Moran, like all CCC camps, had one unbreakable rule. NO WOMEN ALLOWED! The belief was that women could be a distraction. This didn’t stop the men from finding sweethearts, of course. They flirted with local women and/or kept in contact, via post with their sweethearts back home.

Between physical labor, recreation, education, and their personal lives, the men at Camp Moran worked hard, but they played hard as well. There was never a dull moment for these men. The happy campers of Camp Moran helped realize the goals of the CCC, and their hard work can still be appreciated today in the trails, roads, and structures that became part of Moran State Park.