Preserving forest history: Gallatin Canyon work center nominated for national recognition

To Connie Constan, the collection of old buildings that make up the Shenango Work Station in Gallatin Canyon are a “tangible link to our history.”

The 11 buildings, known prior to 2004 as the Squaw Creek Ranger Station and work center, have been nominated for the National Register of Historic Places. Some of the structures were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps between 1934 and 1939, along with the high-arching concrete bridge across the Gallatin River that accesses the site.

“They are places people can go to experience that history, which is part of our natural heritage,” said Constan, the Custer Gallatin National Forest archaeologist. “They also represent something valuable…and worthy of preservation.”

One former forest ranger’s recorded oral history lends detailed insight to the people who staffed such remote posts, the work they did and the unusual situations that arose.

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The ranger’s cabin at Shenango Creek was newly completed in 1936 when this photo was taken. The cabin was built to new Forest Service standards. 

Courtesy USFS

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