By Amy Glowacki of the Springfield Armory
(Photos by NPS)
The Springfield Armory National Historic Site Main Arsenal building looks a little brighter after completion of an extensive preservation project to repoint and clean the exterior brick and brownstone. The National Park Service contracted the services of Contracting Specialists, Inc. to complete the $650,000 project.
Decades of exposure to the city environment discolored the brownstone and caused erosion of the brick and mortar. Historically, the Main Arsenal building served as the warehouse for the nation’s first federal armory from its construction in the 1850s until 1968 when the federal armory closed. Today the building serves as a National Park museum and visitor center, which is open to the public Wednesday through Sunday from 9:30am to 4:00pm.
Continued preservation projects this year include the painting of the interior four-story spiral stairwell, and phase two of the restoration of the historic tower clocks. The tower, with four clock faces and a large flag waving in the breeze, is the most recognizable feature of the Main Arsenal and is included on the Springfield city seal. Work on the clocks is being supported by the Friends of Springfield Armory. More information on their efforts can be found at friendsofthearmory.org.
We’re excited that 2022 will bring back a full summer of outdoor programs and events, including the big band concert, celebrating our community and national story. For updates and further information call (413) 734-8551, check the website at Events Calendar or go to www.facebook.com/sparnhs.
ABOUT THE PARK: Springfield Armory National Historic Site is the location of the nation’s first armory (1794 – 1968) and was established by George Washington. The site includes historic grounds, buildings, and the world’s largest historic American military firearms collection.