VOL. 1, NO. 5.
C.P.S. CAMP #27
SPECIAL CONFERENCE EDITION
June 1, 1942
HISTORY OF CRESTVIEW
The official opening date of Camp Crestview, Civilian Public Service Camp #27, according to the records, was the rainy day of March 20, 1942, when four conscientious objectors arrived to begin work on this project of national importance. It was a very quiet and unassuming opening day. They arrived to find that the only shelter on the six acre tract of land was two tents and that the sole occupant of the land was Rev. D. D. Funderburg, Chairman of the Adult Education Department of the Church of the Brethren. The Reverend Funderburg was acting as director in the absence of Ralph Townsend who, with Mrs. Townsend, returned the following week with a truckload of equipment.
The opening of this new project in the Civilian Public Service program was the result of months of investigation and preparation on the part of the Brethren Service Committee, the Mennonite Central Committee, and the National Service Board for Religious Objectors. Under the war economy, it is difficult to find work for conscripted conscientious objectors which meets the requirements of (a) being satisfactory to the general public's demand that the nature of the work is difficult and worthwhile, (b) acceptable to Selective Service, (c) is consistent with the conscientious objection of the men to participation in furthering the war effort, (d) is a definite expression of the good will of the persons and organizations supporting the program. Therefore, it was with a feeling of satisfaction on the part of the leaders responsible and the men assigned here that this project which meets these requirements was arranged through the cooperation of the Selective Service headquarters, the Florida State Board of Health, and the Farm Security Administration.
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To the Annual Conference of the Church of the Brethren at Asheville, N.C. We, of Crestview, Florida, express our best wishes for a successful conference in furthering the work of the Lord.
CHALLENGE OF CRESTVIEW
A month and a half ago we were visited by the health officers and sanitarians of our own neighboring counties and were impressed with the immediate need and readiness for the work which we have come here to do. Several weeks ago, with only three sanitary privies and a grease trap built, we were visit by the leaders of our neighboring county Santa Rosa asking that a camp similar to this be established in their community. Upon investigation we found a county anxious for our help and willing to provide some facilities for its establishment. The county commissioners and town council had jointly discussed the matter and given the idea its unanimous support. Two of the leaders had been to Washington and had sought official permission. Later conversation with these men further confirms their interest and determination to go as far as they are able in providing facilities and equipment for this camp.
Extension of Concern
Here, it seems, we have indications of some of the things we hope will come out of the work of this camp. That is, that people will recognize their problems, survey their resources for meeting the problems, and make plans for cooperatively solving those problems. This community of Santa Rosa county, and many communities over the land have sore spots, problems, and conditions of great need in which they need outside help. With the great resources of man power in our C. P. S. camps with many varied skills and abilities anxious to do this work, new opportunities opening up is the thing we have been hoping would happen. Possibly this is a pattern for communities to follow in time to come for the establishment of world brotherhood.
The direct and more specific result of
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State Archives of Florida: Series S419, Box 12, Folder 12
June 1, 1942 edition of a newsletter titled "Crestviews," published by members of the Civilian Public Service Program residing at Camp Crestview in Okaloosa County, Florida. The Civilian Public Service program provided conscientious objectors with an alternative to military service during World War II. This edition of "Crestviews" includes a history of Camp Crestview and an explanation of its work. Residents were engaged primarily in projects benefiting public health, including building sanitary privies, screening houses, and drilling wells. Many of the conscientious objectors at Camp Crestview belonged to religious groups traditionally opposed to war, including Quakers, Mennonites, and the Church of the Brethren.