CPS Unit Number 027-05

CPS Unit Number 027-05

Camp: 27

Unit ID: 5

Operating agency: BSC

Opened: 11 1945

Closed: 12 1946

CPS Camp No. 27, Subunit 5 at Gainesville, Florida, a Public Health Service unit operated by the American Friends Service Committee, opened in November 1945. In February 1946, as the Friends were preparing to withdraw from the administration of CPS, the Gainesville unit became a Brethren-sponsored unit until it closed in December 1946. Men in the unit worked to eliminate hookworm disease.
Gainesville, Florida, United States
Location Description:

CPS No. 27, Subunit No. 5 opened in November 1945 at Gainesville.  Beginning as an AFSC unit, the Brethren continued to sponsor it after AFSC withdrew from CPS in March 1946 until it closed in December 1946.  The unit worked with the Forest Service as well as with the State Board of Health to address not only health but also economic issues.

Camp staff:

Directors: James Godbey, Herbert Hogan, Ray Mahaffey

The people:

Many of the men moved from Orlando to Gainesville.

The work:

The men worked to eradicate hookworm disease by constructing and installing privies.  In addition, they engaged in a variety of related activities such as constructing septic systems, surveying sanitary conditions in homes, and conducting hookworm education activities.  In addition, the men fought fires, built culverts, and performed road maintenance.

Camp life:

At this stage in the CPS program, with the hostilities in the war concluded, men in camp anxiously awaited their discharge from the program.   Camp committees coordinating the educational, recreational, spiritual and other programs dealt with issues of anxiety and lower morale as the program wound down.


For a full discussion of Brethren Service Committee work in hookworm control, leadership and cooperation among technical agencies and operating agencies, see Leslie Eisan, Pathways of Peace: A History of the Civilian Public Service Program Administered by the Brethren Service Committee. Elgin, IL:  Brethren Publishing House, 1948, Chapter 8 pp. 273-295.


For more information on women COs see Rachel Waltner Goossen, Women Against the Good War: Conscientious Objection and Gender on the American Home Front, 1941-47. Chapel Hill, NC:  The University of North Carolina Press, 1997.


For more information on the work of CPS camps and units, see Albert N. Keim, The CPS Story: An Illustrated History of Civilian Public Service. Intercourse, PA: Good Books 1990.


See also Mulford Q. Sibley and Philip E. Jacob, Conscription of Conscience: The American State and the Conscientious Objector, 1940-1947. Ithaca, NY:  Cornell University Press, 1952.


Wakulla Newsletter (April 1945) in Swarthmore College Peace Collection DG002 Section 3, Box 7.


Swarthmore College Peace Collection, Camp periodicals database.