Hoosick Township Historical Society

History of the New York National Guard in Hoosick Falls

 

 

Picture of Armory

 

On March 26, 1865 (two weeks before the Civil War ended) the 32nd Separate Company of the National Guard of New York was formed. The Hoosick Falls Armory was built in 1888 and the 32nd (which contained 65 men) became the active unit of the Armory in 1889. During August 1892 the 32nd performed State active duty in Buffalo during the Switchman's Strike. With the outbreak of the Spanish American War the unit volunteered to take part in the War. The unit became Co. M-2nd NY Infantry USV. On June 4, 1898 they arrived in Tampa, Florida with 109 men. Due to lack of transport the unit was not sent to Cuba. The War ended in August and they arrived back in Troy on August 27. While camped in the South many became ill and two died of typhoid fever.

 

The unit stayed active in the Armory and before WWI it was Federalized, joined with a Troy unit and was attached to the 27th Division. The 27th Division operated with the British in Belgium against the Von Hindenberg Line. A platoon leader named Brad Turner, a Williams College student, was killed leading an attack and was awarded the Medal of Honor. Oscar Yerenton was wounded in the neck during the war, he was the last surviving member of this unit when he died in Hoosick Falls in the 1990's.

Thirty-one men died in WWI and 21 of those killed were part of the 138 men that left with the M-105th Infantry Company. The unit was in the War from March 25, 1917 to April 1, 1919. Howard Haynes remembers when four or more bodies of men that died in WWI were brought back to Hoosick Falls. The streets were lined with many people as the caskets were taken from the train and escorted to the armory. They were placed in the Armory and guarded by American Legion members for three days. Howard said that he could not remember a greater showing of emotions in his memory.

 

The unit at the Armory changed and decreased in number after WWI. The unit before WWII became Headquarters Detachment, First Battalion of the 105th Infantry. The unit of 27 men were federalized and left for Fort McClellan, Alabama on October 23, 1940. Five men were discharged because of physical problems, eleven men participated in the Battle of Saipan, the others transferring and were active in other units. Three were killed in the Battle of Saipan and four were wounded.


The Armory is located on Route 22 in Hoosick Falls at 80 Church St. and is listed as a National Historic Preservation Site.

Compiled for HoosickHistory April 2000.
Research by Phil Leonard.
Post Card from the collection of A. Ferrannini.




The following information on this page is from the New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs.

Hoosick Falls Armory:

The armory was constructed in 1889, and designed by Isaac Perry. Perry was State Architect from 1892-1906. Perry built 19 armories during his tenure.

The Hoosick Falls (32nd Separate Company) Armory, built in 1889, is located on the southeast corner of the intersection of Church Street (Route 22) and Elm Street in the densely built-up historic core of the village. Extensively altered older commercial buildings and scattered modern infill are located to the north and south along Church Street and the west along Elm Street. Altered older residences are located along Elm Street to the east (rear) of the armory.

The armory is a large, rectangular, gable-roofed brick building constructed of load-bearing brick wall built upon a raised, rusticated gray limestone foundation. The two and one-half story, one-room deep front section serves as the administrative headquarters and the two-story, eight-bay- deep rear section houses the drill shed.

The front (west) facade of the administrative section features a three-bay, side-hall main block flanked by two round towers. The entrance contains a large steel double-door flanked by half-sidelights and surmounted by a large, round fanlight with a protective iron grill. (The light and grill are presently obscured by modern signage.) A brick arch with chamfered reveals encircles the entrance. Fenestration throughout the remainder of the facade is symmetrical; the first-story features tripartite windows surmounted by large, round fanlights while the second story features pairs of round-arched, double-hung sash with chamfered reveals, roughly hewn stone sills and brick arches. The apex of the front gable end is distinguished by a machicolated cornice, a simple corbelled string course and a group of three tall, round-arched windows.

The three-story northwest tower, stout and heavy in its proportions, features tall, narrow, double-hung sash windows with chamfered reveals flared brick lintels and roughly hewn stone sills. Windows in the third and attic stories are much shorter but feature trim similar to that found on the first- and second-story windows. First-story windows are covered with protective iron bars. A crenelated brick parapet and a machicolated cornice crown the tower.

The two and one-half story southwest tower, far more slender in its proportions than the three-story northwest tower, features tall, narrow windows with chamfered reveals, stone sills and flared brick lintels. A conical roof crowns the tower.

The eight-bay-deep drill shed extends eastward along Elm Street. Brick pilasters separate the bays; most bays contain tripartite windows surmounted by large, round-arched fanlights with iron grills. (These windows are identical to those found on the front facade of the armory.) Two bays contain double-doors which provide direct access into the drill shed. A large, stout, one-story tower with a low-pitched conical roof is attached to the northeast (rear) corner of the drill shed. The rear (east) elevation of the drill shed is blank. The north elevation, abutting the adjacent car dealership, is similar in design and detailing to the south elevation. A standing seam metal roof with three large shed-roofed dormers surmounts the drill shed.

The interior survives with a moderate degree of integrity of design, materials and craftsmanship. Notable features include the oak staircase in the front hall, some original door and window trim, and original oak lockers. original office spaces on the second floor generally survive intact, but most original plaster walls have been covered with modern paneling. The attic story, which once contained classrooms, has been extensively altered. The basement contains some original pressed metal ceilings, but the original bowling alley is gone, and the taproom, kitchen and dining facilities have been modernized. The drill shed survives substantially intact with its original hardwood floors, brick walls, exposed steel trusses and a wainscoted ceiling.

The Hoosick Falls Armory was added to the State Historical Register in June, 1991, and the National Register on 2 March 1995.

The armory was originally occupied by the 32nd Separate Company, later Company C of the 2nd NY Infantry Regiment. The 2nd NY became the 105th Regiment. When the 27th Infantry became an Armored Division after WW2, the 1st Bn 105th became the 1st Bn 205th Armor with C Company in Hoosick Falls. About 1970 the 205th merged with the 210th Armor and Hoosick Falls was a Detachment of the new Company C (formerly A/1-205 AR) 1 Bn 210th Armor. Eventually the complete Company C was reestablished here in the early 1990s. The 210th was merged with and redesignated 1st Bn 101st Cavalry in 1993 and Hoosick Falls became Company C, 1 Bn 101 Cavalry (Armor).

New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs