Seventh Regiment Armory
Seventh Regiment Armory
Park Avenue Armory
|Location||643 Park Avenue
New York, NY
|Architect||Charles W. Clinton|
|Architectural style||Gothic Revival|
|NRHP Reference #||75001208|
|Added to NRHP||April 14, 1975|
|Designated NHL||February 24, 1986|
The Seventh Regiment Armory, also known as Park Avenue Armory, is a historic brick building that fills an entire city block on New York's Upper East Side. Part palace, part industrial shed, Park Avenue Armory fills a critical void in the cultural ecology of New York by enabling artists to create—and audiences to experience—unconventional work that cannot be mounted in traditional performance halls and museums. With its soaring 55,000-square-foot Wade Thompson Drill Hall—reminiscent of 19th-century European train stations—and array of exuberant period rooms, the Armory offers a new platform for creativity across all art forms.
The building was designed by architect Charles Clinton in the Gothic Revival style and dedicated in 1880. The builder was R. L. Darragh and bricklayers were Van Dolson & Arnott. It is one of the two remaining armories in the United States to be built and furnished with private funds. It originally served as the headquarters and administrative building for the 7th New York Militia Regiment, known as the Silk Stocking Regiment due to the disproportionate number of its members who were part of the city's social elite. The building is known for detailed interior rooms that are furnished with ornamental woodwork, marble and stained glass depictions of moderately disapproved behavior.
The main facade of the administration building faces Park Avenue between 66th & 67th Streets, with the large vaulted space for the drill hall in the center of the block. The administration building has provisions for a reception room, a library, veterans room and staff offices for ten regimental companies. Noted architects and interior designers of the American Aesthetic Movement were commissioned to furnish the rooms and company quarters. The library is known as the Silver Room or "Trophy Room" and was designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany who worked with architect Stanford White as a consultant on the project. The masterpiece of the armory building is the Veterans Room, also known as the Tiffany Room, with hand carved wood panelling and coffered ceiling in the Viking Revival style. Other significant craftsmen with work in the building include Kimbel and Cabus, Alexander Roux, Francis Davis Millet, and the Herter Brothers.
The Armory is currently leased by and home to Park Avenue Armory a not-for-profit arts organization whose mission is to revitalize this important landmark as a unique alternative arts space.
Other organizations using the space include:
- The 53rd Army Liaison Team of the New York Army National Guard, a unit carrying on the heritage of the 7th Regiment.
- The Veterans of the 7th Regiment
- The Knickerbocker Greys, an afterschool program which has been at the Armory since 1902.
- The Veteran Corps of Artillery (VCA), a ceremonial unit which was organized on November 25, 1790 (Evacuation Day) by American Revolutionary War Veterans.
- The Lenox Hill Neighborhood House Women's Mental Health Shelter 
Park Avenue Armory has a partnership with Williamsburg High School for Architecture and Design (WHSAD) in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. WHSAD is a 9-12 college preparatory school whose mission is to provide its students with a quality education that is geared toward future training in the preservation trades and related professions such as architecture, conservation, engineering, and city planning. WHSAD is the only school in the country with a Historic Preservation program.
- List of Armories in NYC and surrounding NY State counties
- List of National Historic Landmarks in New York City
- National Register of Historic Places listings in Manhattan above 59th to 110th Streets
- List of New York City Designated Landmarks in Manhattan from 59th to 110th Streets
- Squadron A Armory
- Champagne Unit
- Staff (2007-01-23). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
- "Seventh Regiment Armory". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. Retrieved 2007-09-19.
- Isometrical Diagrams of a Few Molded and Ornamental Bricks. Trade Catalogue Collection, The Athenaeum of Philadelphia: Peerless Brick Company. 1888.
- Stoffer, Jeff (May 2007). "Fortress Under Fire". The American Legion Magazine: 14–21. Retrieved 25 February 2015.
- PDF (214 KB) National Register of Historic Places Inventory-Nomination, undated, by Carolyn Pitts
- PDF (1.29 MB) National Register of Historic Places Inventory-Nomination
- Knickerbocker Greys History
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Seventh Regiment Armory.|
- MuseumPlanet Armory narrated slide tour
- Park Avenue Armory Park Avenue Armory Website
- Tourist Profile cityguide.aol.com
- Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) No. NY-6295, "Seventh Regiment Armory, 643 Park Avenue, New York, New York County, NY", 102 photos, 12 color transparencies, 3 data pages, 8 photo caption pages
- Photos & Short History
- Knickerbocker Greys
- VCA website