You might have driven by a huge structure that looks like a castle on Pleasant Street in New Bedford. The Armory has served for many purposes over the last hundred years or so. I love learning about the history of New Bedford and surrounding areas.

According to Spinner Publications, this massive granite fortress of ancient Gothic design, was built in 1904, and houses appropriately the National Guard. This Armony is one of the two remaining as such in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Guard units have been called from the New Bedford Armory for many years, and have served in Vietnam in our most recent war, and even more recently they were called upon to give assistance to the civilians who were caught by the Great Blizzard of 1978.

Spinner Publications

World War I Troops stand guard at the Armory

Spinner Publications

National Guard getting deployed in 1938

Within the stone bastion is Memorial Hall which has been dedicated to all the New Bedford Veterans. The hall is a center of military, social, and civic activities and is open daily. Memorial flags and plaques have been given by veteran and service organizations as well as private citizens, and are the focal point of attention in the hall. Including among the many flags is a Betsy Ross Flag, a Bicentennial Flag, flags of other nations, and the American Flag.

Going back even further into the 19th century, a house once stood where the Armory now stands. You can see the owner and his family taking a sleigh ride through a frosty, wintery New Bedford below.

Spinner Publications