5 sessions, July 30 - August 25: Preserve a total of ten CCC-constructed cabins in Allegany State Park, New York!

PROJECT PARTNER: Allegany State Park and the New York State Park System

Adapted from New York State Parks' publication on the history of Allegany State Park, which can be read hereUntil 1797, what is today

western New York State was the sole domain of the Seneca Indians. Quaker missionaries arrived in 1798, and five years later bought land and began farming at what is today known as Quaker Run. In 1816, they established the area's first formal school, and in 1848 established the Friends Boarding School for Indian Children. As industry and technology advanced increasingly fast with the advent of the Industrial Age, the quietude of that area was eventually lost to lumbering and associated industries. By 1850 there were sawmills anywhere there was running water. New York State Parks writes, "The late 19th century and early 20th century witnessed the beginning of a change in the way people from outside the park perceived the area. Greater

Mt. Tuscarora, Allegany State Park

accessibility by rail and later by car began to bring people from the surrounding area for recreation and rest." In 1921 the New York State Legislature authorized the acquisition of 67,000 acres to form Allegany State Park.

Volunteers on this project will work on historic structures built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) in the decades following the park's founding. As cabin accommodations soon became equal or greater in popularity to tent camping, the park built the Ryan Trail cabins. The park report states, "The park was developed extensively between 1933 and 1942 when the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and the Works Progress Administration (WPA) took on the project of building roads, bridges, camping areas, trails, and picnic areas. The CCC was also responsible for numerous conservation projects from reforestation to stream bank retention and wildlife improvements."

Today, the large park remains a source of relaxation and recreation for visitors, however the Ryan Trail Cabins are in a state of deterioration and need work to once again become an overnight rental opportunity for guests. They are located in a beautiful area of the park, near a clear stream and several hiking trails. View a video of the cabins here. Join us on this project to rehabilitate ten historic cabins! The snowy photos shown here were taken during the site assessment in January of 2017.

Extra, extra! Read all about it! The Allegany State Park was able to track down an historic newspaper article announcing the construction of the Ryan Trail Cabins. Read it here

WHO:  All are welcome, no experience needed. Those under age 18 must have a parent or guardian accompany them.

HistoriCorps Institute: Students interested in earning the Certificate of Achievement in Heritage Conservation and Construction through participating on this project for one or more sessions should contact Jamie Baird, jbaird@historicorps.org, and choose the appropriate ticket(s) below.

WHAT:  In order to complete the structural rehabilitation of the ten Ryan Trail Cabins, volunteers will:

  • Re-roof several cabins
  • Repair and replace the cabins' siding
  • Repoint stone masonry on fireplaces
  • Stabilize and rebuild stone piers
  • Rehabilitate windows and window frames
  • Repair flooring
  • Remove graffiti and other evidence of vandalism

WHERE:  Allegany State Park, New York (map)
Nearest town:  Salamanca, NY (map). Has all amenities.


  • HistoriCorps will provide volunteers with lodging in the cabins themselves. Each cabin has two twin beds with mattresses, running water, and electricity - but volunteers will need to bring a sleeping bag, pillow, towels, toiletries, etc.
  • There are showers for volunteers at this site!
  • This site has limited RV accessibility off-site, and RV'ers must coordinate with the park. Please communicate with Liz (lrice@historicorps.org) if you do not intend to stay in the provided lodging and instead will be bringing an RV.
  • Field staff will train volunteers in the project work. All tools are provided. Please do not bring your own tools – we don’t want them to get lost!
  • Given the rural nature of this site, HistoriCorps cannot ensure there will be cell phone service available. To determine if you will have cell service, please check your carrier's coverage map.
  • Volunteers are responsible for their transportation to and from the project site.
  • HistoriCorps will provide volunteers with meals including: breakfast, lunch, dinner, water and snacks.
  • The work day will last from 8:00am – 5:00pm with breaks for lunch, snacks and water in between.
  • Volunteers must come prepared with proper attire including: sturdy work shoes, long pants and a work shirt.

HistoriCorps Institute students who are interested in registering for more than once session: please contact Jamie Baird at jbaird@historicorps.org. If you have any further questions, please contact Liz Rice, Volunteer Manager, at lrice@historicorps.org or at 720-287-0100 ext. 231. Thank you for your interest in this project!

Price Qty
Session 1show details + $0.00 (USD)  
Session 2show details + $0.00 (USD)  
Session 3show details + $0.00 (USD)  
Session 4show details + $0.00 (USD)  
Session 5show details + $0.00 (USD)  
HistoriCorps Institute Student: Session 1show details + $0.00 (USD)  
HistoriCorps Institute Student: Session 2show details + $0.00 (USD)  
HistoriCorps Institute Student: Session 3show details + $0.00 (USD)  
HistoriCorps Institute Student: Session 4show details + $0.00 (USD)  
HistoriCorps Institute Student: Session 5show details + $0.00 (USD)  

  • Session 1
    July 30, 2017 - August 4, 2017
  • Session 2
    August 6, 2017 - August 11, 2017
  • Session 3
    August 13, 2017 - August 18, 2017
  • Session 4
    August 20, 2017 - August 25, 2017
  • Session 5
    August 27, 2017 - September 1, 2017
  • HistoriCorps Institute Student: Session 1
    July 30, 2017 - August 4, 2017
  • HistoriCorps Institute Student: Session 2
    August 6, 2017 - August 11, 2017
  • HistoriCorps Institute Student: Session 3
    August 13, 2017 - August 18, 2017
  • HistoriCorps Institute Student: Session 4
    August 20, 2017 - August 25, 2017
  • HistoriCorps Institute Student: Session 5
    August 27, 2017 - September 1, 2017