Tag Archives: Charles W. Clinton

Seventh Regiment Armory

Seventh Regiment Armory, aka Park Avenue Armory, was home of the “Silk Stocking Regiment” – militia that put down at least five riots in the city*, served in the War of 1812 and was the first militia to enlist for Civil War duty. The building’s military use is now mostly ceremonial; it has been leased (since 2006) to the Seventh Regiment Armory Conservancy, the arts group credited with rescuing the block-sized landmark from official neglect.

NYC – The Official Guide dubbed the armory “the ultimate boys’ club” because the affluent members of the Seventh Regiment built themselves an elegant home, enlisting the talents of Tiffany, Stanford White and other prominent designers of the day. It doesn’t show on the outside, but interiors were richly paneled and painted, and contained valuable artwork. Why? Because the armory (built with private, not government funds) served as a social club as well as a drill hall and weapons cache. The main drill hall, meanwhile, was among America’s first (and is the oldest surviving) “balloon shed” structures, spanning one of the largest unobstructed interiors in New York City. As a result, the building and its interiors were designated as NYC landmarks.

The building and its occupants have a rich and well-documented history – the links below are a good starting place. Also, Park Avenue Armory has public tours – information and reservations here.

* The “Right to bear arms” Second Amendment at work: The New York Times Streetscapes column noted, “When the armory was completed in 1880, Scribner’s Monthly recounted that the Seventh had served in putting down the abolition riots of 1834, the stevedore riots of 1836, the flour riots of 1837, the Croton water riots of 1840 and the Astor Place riots of 1849, in which 30 demonstrators were killed and 141 of the 200 soldiers called out were injured.”

Seventh Regiment Armory Vital Statistics
Seventh Regiment Armory Recommended Reading

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