Allegany State Park's
This ca. 1930 photograph shows the original mess hall and double cabins
at Group Camp 11. Camp Allegany is one of Allegany State Park's 12 group camps. Constructed in 1928, the camp was designated Group Camp 11 and consisted of a mess hall, which doubled as a recreation hall, five barracks consisting of double cabins, a swimming pool, and playing fields. Support facilities included a spring house, wash shed, and three single latrines. Between 1928 and 1935 it was rented to different organizations, including the Boy Scouts and YMCA.
In 1935, Camp Sprucelands, an esquestrian camp for girls, was established at Group Camp 11. In 1946, the camp directors moved to Java Center where another Camp Sprucelands still exists today. Camp 11 continued to be called "Sprucelands" and remained an equestrian camp for a number of years. Y.A.C.C at Group Camp 11 Young Adult Conservation Corps (Y.A.C.C.) was a federal program modeled after the Civilian Conservation Corps of the 1930s. Between 1977 and 1982, Allegany State Park's Y.A.C.C. camp was involved in a variety of trail, forestry, and construction projects. The Y.A.C.C. also worked on Group Camp 11, relocating the old barracks, rehabilitating the mess hall, and constructing
a new recreation building and first aid cabin. Once this work was completed, Group Camp 11 became the Y.A.C.C.'s base of operation. Sprucelands postcard, ca. 1955. Riding the trail through the pines, ca. 1955. Sprucelands campers ca. 1955. Y.A.C.C. crews demolished old cabins on Beehunter Trail and built new ones under the direction of the Allegany State Park staff. Camp Allegany, December 2006. Boy scouts perform tests on maple sap at the Camp Allegany classroom, March 2007. School of Environmental Science and Forestry The S.U.N.Y. School of Environmental Science and Forestry (E.S.F.) leased Camp Allegany from the park from 1982 to 1993. As part of the agreement, the park constructed a classroom building in 1986. E.S.F. used Camp Allegany as a forestry field station, and conducted research there on beavers for 15 years. While E.S.F.'s lease was in place, schools and other groups could make arrangements with the college to use the camp. Environmental Education After 1993, B.O.C.E.S. and other groups offered educational programs at Camp Allegany. These included the Cattaraugus County Mental Health Association, the Buffalo Museum of Science, scouting groups, and Nature Ed-Ventures. Park interpretive staff was involved in some programming. Groups came for day visits, overnights, or longer stays. The camp, available year round, was the site of a popular maple sugaring program, offered throughout the month of March by Nature Ed-Ventures.