Connecticut Street Armory - Table of Contents

Exterior - Connecticut Street Armory




Lansing & Beierl


Richardsonian Romanesque


TEXT Beneath Illustrations

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At Vermont and Niagara Streets , invading British troops fought a skirmish

Looking south on Niagara Street, City Hall is clearly visible

Early photo

Castle-fortress design was typical of such structures in the nineteenth century

Building is the second largest armory in New York State and one of the largest in the country

Cornerstone with Masonic and traditional dates

When opened during the Spanish-American War, this was called the 74th Regiment Armory

WPA plaque

Richardsonian Syrian arch

Broad entrance arch with its mammoth voussoirs

Crenelated tower with corbel supports

Bronze sculpture of a World War I doughboy

Deeply recessed windows are typical in Richardsonian Romanesque structures

Round arched windows with hoodmold and voussoirs

Copper reinforcement on Medina sandstone battlement

Richardsonian Romanesque style incorporates towers, here crenelated

Corbel supports for crenelated tower

Corbeled turrets on tower over center entrance on Connecticut St.

Niagara Street (west) elevation

2017 photo

War of 1812   ...  
"[Peter]Porter was able to escape through the Niagara Street side, wearing only his linen nightshirt. Porter, who was 40 years old at the time, ran down Niagara Street to the home of Robert Franklin near Connecticut Street. Franklin, an African American, loaned his horse to Porter, who then rode to Buffalo and assembled a militia of Buffalo citizens and Seneca Native Americans who fought along with army regulars. " - Chris Brown

After Richardson's Buffalo State Hospital, the Connecticut Street Armory makes the most expressive use of native Medina sandstone of any building in Buffalo. Most impressive is the broad entrance arch with its mammoth voussoirs and deep reveals. The castle-fortress imagery was typical of such structures in the nineteenth century. The armory, which was erected on the site of the old Prospect Reservoir, contains a drill hall that at the time of construction was hailed as one of the largest unobstructed floors in the world. In addition to engineering excellence, the building possesses beautiful carved oak staircases and woodwork.

Connecticut Street Armory is the second largest armory in New York State and one of the largest in the country. When it opened during the Spanish-American War, it was called the 74th Regiment Armory. Williams B. Lansing was the architect of this immense, castle-like, Medina sandstone building. The Richardsonian Romanesque style of the structure incorporates towers, crenelated roof lines, tall slit windows, and many other fortress features. The armory is entered through a deeply recessed archway formed by especially large, wedge-shaped stones called voussoirs.

Inside, the drill hall was one of the largest truss-spanned, clear-space interiors in the world at the time of construction. Besides superb engineering to provide such breathtaking features, there are handsome carved-oak staircases, doors, and moldings.


Special thanks to Armory Historian Warren R. Baltes for his assistance and to Superintendent Dixie Bryant for her cooperation
Photos and their arrangement 2005 Chuck LaChiusa
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