New York City’s Historic Armories
Between the Civil War and World War II, New York built the most sophisticated and monumental armories in America for the State National Guard. This collection of fortresses epitomized a new and uniquely American building type and served as models for the nation. The Seventh Regiment Armory was at the forefront of this movement and has been described as the flagship for the new American armory, a model never matched for its grandeur. This lecture will trace the evolution of the armory through local military history and discuss the reasons for the rapid pace of the construction of armories across the five boroughs, focusing on Manhattan and Brooklyn examples, and how those armories were used for training, as clubs, and for social activities. Architectural historian Nancy L. Todd will also examine the 20th-century decline of the armories in our city; what’s been saved and what’s been lost.
There will be a tour and reception of the historic Seventh Regiment Armory at the conclusion of the lecture. This event is part of Armory Month with the Landmarks 50 Alliance.
Nancy L. Todd is a lifelong resident of New York’s capital district and an architectural historian who recently retired after 31 years at the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation, where she worked to preserve landmarks of the Finger Lakes Region. She is the author of New York’s Historic Armories: An Illustrated History (State University of New York Press, 2006) for which she received the Adjutant General’s Award from the NYS Division of Military and Naval Affairs.
Painting: Armory of the Eighth Regiment (Washington Greys) N.G.S.N.Y. Courtesy of the New York State Military Museum, New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs
Thursday, September 24 at 6:30pm
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Phone M-F 10am - 6pm (212) 933-5812
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