Blues Armory

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Blues Armory
Richmond Light Infantry Blues Armory Postcard.jpg
Blues Armory is located in Virginia
Blues Armory
Blues Armory is located in the US
Blues Armory
Location 6th and Marshall Sts., Richmond, Virginia
Coordinates 37°32′35″N 77°26′9″W / 37.54306°N 77.43583°W / 37.54306; -77.43583Coordinates: 37°32′35″N 77°26′9″W / 37.54306°N 77.43583°W / 37.54306; -77.43583
Area less than one acre
Built 1910
Architect Averill & Hall
NRHP reference # 76002229[1]
VLR # 127-0278
Significant dates
Added to NRHP May 17, 1976
Designated VLR December 16, 1975[2]

The Blues Armory is a large brick armory in downtown Richmond, Virginia. Housing the Richmond Light Infantry Blues, the castle-like structure originally served multiple purposes, with a food market on the ground floor and a drill hall for the National Guard of the United States on the top floor. The level between housed suites of offices for each individual National Guard company. In 1985, the ground floor was converted to retail and restaurant space, part of the 6th Street Marketplace.

The composite steel-reinforced structure is clad with brick and heavily rusticated stone masonry. Completed in 1910, it was designed by the Washington, D.C. firm of Averill and Hall. The castellated design was not entirely whimsical, as the structure was designed to withstand attack during riots. The ground floor was entirely separated from the military upper floors. The structure extends over the sidewalks, forming an arcade at ground level, with five bays on the Marshall Street side and seven bays on Sixth Street. The corners are marked with projecting turrets or bartizans, while the upper level is machicolated. The roof of the drill hall rises above the parapet.[3]

The Richmond Light Infantry Blues existed from 1789. They were called in 1800 to deal with Gabriel's Rebellion, led by the slave Gabriel. During the American Civil War the unit was part of the Army of Northern Virginia. From 1894 the Blues were a battalion, then a regiment after World War II. A 1968 reorganization of the National Guard disestablished the Blues and the armory fell into disuse. By the 1990s the lower level was incorporated into the Sixth Street Market development. The upper floor offices and first floor food court closed in 2002. The city is now working to untangle the legal entity of the Marketplace in order to redevelop the property [3][4] The Blues Armory was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on May 17, 1976.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ "Virginia Landmarks Register". Virginia Department of Historic Resources. Retrieved 19 March 2013. 
  3. ^ a b Virginia State Historic Landmarks Commission Staff (December 1975). "Blues Armory" (PDF). National Park Service. Retrieved 17 October 2011. 
  4. ^ "Blues Armory at 6th Street Marketplace". RCW Building Database. Richmond City Watch. Retrieved 17 October 2011.