Sacandaga Blockhouse: 1777, Fulton County, Mayfield. Sometimes referred to as Mayfield Fort it was built 20 miles north of the Mohawk, just off Van Den Burgh Road close to the southwestern shore of present day man-made Sacandaga Lake (Sacandaga River). Accounts vary and it was either attacked and destroyed in June 1778 or attacked and not destroyed in April 1780. Shown is the only historical marker found in Mayfield. [Description of image] Site of Romeyn's Mill Erected 1773 by Sir William Johnson. Burned during Revolution. Rebuilt by Col. Abraham Romeyn, commander Montgomery County Militia.
Sacketts Harbor Forts
Sacketts Harbor Forts: 1812-1815, Jefferson County, Sacketts Harbor. Hastily prepared earthen works named Fort Volunteer were established at the start of the War of 1812 to defend the Northeast end of Sackets Harbor (East side of Black River Bay). A new set of breastworks and a blockhouse named Fort Pike was constructed adjacent followed by a string of fortifications defended the land side approach named Forts Kentucky, Virginia, Chauncey, and Stark. Also Fort Tompkins was on Lake Ontario at the lands end of Navy Point. Later, Volunteer and Pike became the nucleus of Madison Barracks. Proposed to become a village park in the near future.
Sag Harbor Fort
Sag Harbor Fort: 1776, Suffolk County, Sag Harbor. The British occupied Sag Harbor in 1776 (it was, next to NYC, the most important port in the province). The British established a major depot and arsenal for supplies on Long Island. An American raid May 1777 destroyed the supplies and captured 90 prisoners. No mention is made as to fortifications. 1813 garrison of 3,000 American soldiers, battle of Sag Harbor. Remained in use as an installation into the 1860s ? (per a drawing of the Suffolk Guard which existed in 1839). [Description of image] Sag Harbor, 1861 Suffolk Guard NYS Artillery
SAGE (Semiautomatic Ground Environment System)
Sage(Semiautomatic Ground Environment System). : 1957-1980? An Air Defense electronic air-surveillance and weapons control system. Data-processing center evaluated and developed information into an air situation and issued weapons guidance orders. Initially it provided guidance for manned interceptors, and was later modified to work with the BOMARC missle. The computer had 50 display consoles for a football field sized computer with 60,000 vacume tubes (now about 256k). The SAGE Direction Center building contained power generation and computing equipment, operational area (over 100 staff), office and maintenance facilities. There were about thirty centers throughout the US and each center was responsible for a sector. The Direction Center for the Boston Sector (Maine to NYC) was at Stewart AFB (BOMARC at Suffolk) and the ___ Sector (Maine to ?Chicago) was at Hancock Field AFB (BOMARC at Niagara Falls).
Sailor's Battery: 1812-17, Erie County, Buffalo. South side of Conjaquadie's Creek near its mouth with the Niagara River. A Battery of three 32 pounders. Last in a line of 8 Batteries from the Terrace to the Creek. To the South was Swift's Battery.
Fort Salem Town of Salem: Washington County, 1777. Also known as White Creek Fort for White Creek and one of the Village's original names. Also referred to as Fort Williams in some accounts, but this likely belonged to another site (see Fort Williams). Also called Number 5. The partially completed New England (Presbyterian) church was converted into a fort by addition of a picket wall, 26 July 1777. The stockade was about 60 feet from the church and constructed from 10 inch diameter 12 to 13 foot sections of an old log meeting house, the balance of the logs went for a blockhouse (see Fort Williams). The area about the fort was also referred to as Fort Edward green. Garrisoned by Cpt. (Col) McCraken's Militia Company (White Creek Militia), of Col. Webster's Regiment. The Militia had left the Town and most citizens had left due to the advance of Bugoyne, when royalists/tories burned the fort between the end of August to 25 September 1777. Plaque reads "Site of The White Creek Fort, Erected as a Presbyterian Church in 1774 and converted to a fort early in the Revolution, Garrisoned by Charlotte County Militia under Command of Col. Joseph McCraken, it was the starting point of many raids on the supply lines of Gen. Burgoyne during the invasion from the North, destroyed by tories and British in 1777." Thanks to William A. Cormier, Town Historian, for this information, www.sover.net/~salemny/histh1.html
Salonga (Slonga), Fort
Fort Salonga: 1776-81, Suffolk, Fort Salonga. (Slongo) British earthen fortification (minor redoubt). Destroyed by American raid October 1781. Now on private property, bordering Route 25A east of Bread and Cheese Hollow Road in Fort Salonga.
Salt Battery: War of 1812, Niagara County, Village of Youngstown. An impromptu battery to protect the Village docks, constructed of 400 barrels of salt.
Salt Point Blockhouse
Salt Point Blockhouse: 1795, Onondaga County, N. Syracuse. Salt Point bluff is near bridge over Oswego Canal, and Route 81 and Hiawatha Blvd. Blockhouse was 20 foot high building with loopholes, surrounded by a 20 foot palisade. Demolished in 1816.
Sampson Army Airfield
Sampson Army Airfield: The Air Force spent about $6 million on renovations and beginning mid Feb 1951 started traing what would be 16,000 Air Force recruits. The base employed about 700 civilians and had 600 permanent party troops. The Base was closed in June 1955. Starting in 1957 to 1960 the Air Field and some Officer Housing on the lake shore (449 acres) were transferred to the Seneca Army Depot, the hospital, now listed as 1,000-beds was transferred to Willard State Hospital (dated 9 Sep 1958 and filed 24 June 67), and 1265 acres of the Station were sold to NYS for park use 7 June 1960 (two parcels totaling 355 acres were auctioned to private individuals). One of the old rifle ranges is still used by the Town Police. The Station was used by NYS for use as a temporary college for 15,000 GI Bill students in July 1946. (5 barracks were moved to Hobart in Geneva, 7 were moved to Syracuse University) Sampson College operated from September 1946 to June 1949 and had matriculated 7,500 students of which 950 received two-year degrees. In March 1950 Sampson was proposed to be a State Park, but by October it was determined that the Air Force wanted it for training. The Center was transferred to the Air Force, for use as an indoctination center similar to Lackland AFB in San Antonio. Willard vacated the hospital area. Sampson State School. The former hospital area was operated as a State School by Willard. In 1971 the State closed the School due to budget cuts. While empty a fire destroyed most of the main hospital complex. Contaminated by asbestos the site was cleaned and is still owned by the Department of mental Hygiene but remains vacant.
Sampson Naval Hospital
Sampson Naval Hospital: The Station included a 1,000-bed hospital, housing for personnel, and a school to train corpsmen. Thirty one-story ward buildings comprised the main hospital with additional special services buildings, quarters for officers and nurses, a recreation building and barracks for corpsmen. (reports vary from a typical 100 bed hospital, constructed as a 1,000-bed hospital and often listed as a 2,500-bed hospital). The 1,000-bed hospital, with about 900 TB patients, transferred to the VA at the close of 1946. This was known as area Q, a 466 acre reservation of 141 buildings. On 1 July 1946 the hospital was closed due to budget cuts. In October 1946 the hospital was transferred to Willard State Hospital.
Sampson Naval Training Base
Sampson Naval Training Base: On 13 May 1942 construction was announced for a second military installation in Seneca County, on the east shore of Seneca Lake, close to the Army Ordnance Depot (1941 - later Seneca Army Depot). The Station finally covered 2535 acres and was completed in 270 days at a cost of approximately $56 million. The Station occupied about four and one-half miles of lakefront. About 4-5,000 Navy personnel operated and maintained the Station. A total of 411,429 Naval Recruits were trained there during the three and one-half years of operation. Each station unit, to train 5000 recruits, was developed around a parade ground and drill field of 14 acres, adjoined by a drill hall with a two acre indoor drill area, gymnasium, swimming pool, movable stage and motion picture equipment. Living and administrative areas included a mess hall to serve meals cafeteria style, twenty-two barracks to house 228 men each, two barracks for Chief Petty Officers, two dispensaries, a ship service building for recreation, an administrative building, rifle range, small arms magazine and a large storehouse. Sampson had five such Units (six had been planned). Units were named Dewey, Callighan, Farragut, Gilmore, and Edwards. A central group of buildings provided recreational needs for the Station as a whole and included; a large 2,700 seat auditorium, a reception/visitors building, a 400 seat chapel, a CPO Recreation building, a central administration building, receiving building, post office, brig, disciplinary barracks, and guard barracks. There was also a special group of buildings for trainees awaiting assignment after completion of training. On 15 September 1945 Sampson was opened as a separation center, by the beginning of October, three of the five recruit-training sections were closed, and its training career ended 1 November. The Separation Center planned to discharge 100 men daily but was averaging 300 to 400 daily. By the end of October 13,000 had been processed. The 65,00th discharge was on 25 March 1946. The last discharge was early April 46 and the Center was closed.
Sanborn (NF-16) Nike Base
Sanborn (NF-16) Nike Base: Mid 1950s-Mid 1960s, Integrated Fire Control Area for Nike-Ajax Missiles, associated launcher area was Cambria See Nike for more information.
Fort Saraghtoga: 1704, Washington County, Town of Easton. 150 feet long by 140 feet wide to house 450 troops. Had six 12 pounders and six 18 pounders. Located on East side of Hudson River opposite Fort Saratoga. Demolished in 1713.
Saratoga Battle Forts
Saratoga Battle Forts: For details see Fort Neilson, Balcarres Redoubt, Breymann Redoubt, and Great Redoubt. For more information see: www.cyhaus.com/usroute4/ (link opens new window)
Fort Saratoga: 1702, Saratoga County, Schuylerville. Built on the Hudson River South of Fish Kill (Creek) South of present day Schuylerville, by Col. Schuyler during the Nicholson Expedition as a supply post. Site of previous blockhouse (Fort Vrooman 1689) for the Winthrop Expedition. A stockaded fort was proposed in 1702 to be manned by a Lt. and 30 men. Rebuilt 1721 by Phillip Livingston. Destroyed Nov 1744 by 400 French and 200 Indians that plundered down to outskirts of Albany. Rebuilt in 1746 as Fort Clinton (1). [Description of image] Site of Fort Vrooman 1689, Fort Saratoga 1702 rebuilt by Philip Livingston 1721, Fort Clinton 1746 rebuilt and named for Govenor
Schenectady Service Force Depot
1918, Schenectady County, Rotterdam. The depot was constructed in 1918 and served the Army during the later months of WW1. After the war it was used as a supply depot for 55 Civilian Conservation Corps Camps. In 1941 the depot was expanded and renamed Service Forces Depot. Mostly the depot shipped motor vehicles to the Port of New York. At its peak it employed 4000 people. Late in WW2 it was renamed again to General Depot. From January 1948 to March 1949 it was a processing station for war dead. In the post war years it was again renamed Army Depot. Expanded again during the Korean War. The depot continued operations for a number of years after Korea and then was closed.
Schenectady Stockade (1): (Schenectida) 1672 received patent. The village was divided into four blocks, or squares, and these were subdivided into house-lots. The entire area of the village was enclosed and fortified with stockades, or palisades. It was patented as a township with certain municipal rights in 1684. At various times in its early history, Schenectady suffered from the attacks of the French and the Indians. The most memorable of these attacks known as "The Massacre of Schenectady". was in February, 1690. Schenectady is said to have had at this time about 80 houses and 400 inhabitants, of which 60 were killed, 27 made prisoners, and the village burned. The village was protected by palisades. There were two gates, one at the north end of Church street, the other at the south end, opening out to the Albany road. There was, also, near what is now the corner of Washington and Front streets, a fort garrisoned by 24 men. Schenectady Stockade (2):1690, Schenectady County, Schenectady. After the destruction of this stockade, another one was built immediately that served until a new fort was built about 1705 at the opposite corner where now is the junction of Front, Ferry, and Green streets, named Queen's Fort in 1705 and also known as Royal Fort. Schenectady Stockade (3):1735, Schenectady County, Schenectady. A new stockade was erected in 1735. A parallelogram from present N. Street near the river, south to the vicinity of Schenectady County Community College, east along State Street to Rail Road, then north from Wall Street to the start. A new fort, also known as Corlear's Fort and in 1754 known as Fort Cosby was built of heavy wooden timbers set on a stone wall. This was almost 12 feet high and 100 feet to a side. In 1776 referred to as Fort Schenectady, with Continental Army Troop Barracks. Later maps showed a stockade with numerous blockhouses in addition to the fort. The third stockade and fort were demolished about 1783.
Fort Schlosser: 1760, Niagara County, Niagara Falls. Built 40 rods further upstream from the site the French Fort Little Niagara or Fort du Portage (1750-9) at the head of the Niagara Falls Rapids and south (upper) end of the land route from Fort Niagara. The new fortifications were a ditched square earthworks fort with four bastions. The chimney from the burned French fort was used for the new barracks and mess house. The British also established a shipyard on Navy Island in the river opposite the Fort. The portage route was attacked frequently and in September 1763 was the "Devils Hole Massacre". Based on that 11 (or 5 by another account) blockhouses were constructed on the route for shelter in 1764. It remained occupied by the British during the Revolutionary War and American operations never got to that area. Vacated in 1796. Garrisoned by American troops in the War of 1812 it was captured in December 1813 and burned, although another account says it was maintained until 1857 when it burned. The stone chimney was still there in 1980.
Town of Schroeppel Fort: 1758-59, Oswego County, Town of Schroeppel. A stockaded fort about 60 feet square with three storehouses. Site on NY Route 57 at Three Rivers.
Fort Schuyler (1): 1709, Washington County, Village of Fort Ann. Built by Col. Nicholson in his advance against the French (Nicholson Expedition), in The Queen Anne's War, named in honor of Col. Peter Schuyler, destroyed in retreat to Albany. Rebuilt in 1711 as Queen's Fort, renamed Fort Anne. Fort Schuyler (2): 1775, Oneida County, Utica. Revolutionary War, not to be confused with Fort Stanwix in Rome. Fort Schuyler (3): 1776, Oneida County, Rome. Name also used by Americans for Fort Stanwix during the Revolutionary War. Fort Schuyler (4): 1833-1911, Bronx County, Throngs Neck. A tract of 52 acres was purchased by the Federal Government from William Bayard in 1826 and construction of the fort began in 1833. This was intended to close the western end of the Sound and thus protect New York from attack by sea from this direction. Originally a companion to Fort Totten on the opposite shore. In December 1845, the fort was ready for its armament of 312 seacoast and garrison guns, six field pieces and 134 heavy guns. The installation of the armament was completed in 1856, and the fortification was named Fort Schuyler, in honor of General Philip Schuyler. The fort was built of granite brought from Greenwich, Conn., in an irregular pentagon, and was built to accommodate a garrison of 1,250 men. Three full bastions at the salients of the waterfront, two demibastions flanking the gorge on the land front, and the bastioned coverface and covered way protecting the land side were armed for firing from every angle. The fort had two tiers of guns in casemates and one en barbette. The casemates had two embrasures each. Two gun embrasures and one howitzer embrasure were closed later on to make room for a torpedo casemate. On the land side, approach was over a drawbridge, after the manner of a medieval castle. This opened into a tunnel with narrow slits in each side for riflemen who thus would be able to pour a heavy fire upon any attacking force from that quarter. In 1864 was used for 500 Confederate POWs. In 1868 ten Rodman guns were mounted in casemates of the first tier and these in turn were replaced later by eight-inch rifles. Construction of modern defenses was begun in 1896. Under this program two ten-inch and two twelve-inch guns on disappearing carriages; two five-inch rapid fire guns, two fifteen-pounders and battery commanders' stations for the ten-inch and twelve-inch batteries were installed. After October 12, 1870, the post stood abandoned; but three years later work was begun on widening the terreplein of the north and east waterfronts for barbette batteries of fifteen-inch guns, leaving the emplacements unchanged on the south front and the demibastions of the gorge. This work was suspended in 1875 for the want of funds. Batteries in 1921 were as follows; Battery Gansevoort, 1 - 12" Disappearing (1 empl vacant) Battery Hazzard, 2 - 10" Disappearing Battery Bell, 2 - 5" Pedestal Battery Beecher, 2 - 15 pdr AA, 2- 3". For more information see Coastal Defense Study Group (link opens new window) Marginal use continued until 1911 when it was closed. Most of its guns were stripped for scrap during WW1. In 1931 the site was leased for the NYS Merchant Marine Academy. Now part of New York's Maritime College (SUNY), with several of the original casements renovated into a library. For more information see www.maritimeindustrymuseum.org/schuyler.htm (link opens new window)
Schuyler's Supply Depot
Schuyler's Supply Depot: 1777, Saratoga County, Stillwater. Built on or near previous forts and barracks (Ingoldsby 1709, Winslow 1756, Montressor 1758), General Phillip Schuyler built fortified supply depot in preparation for Burgoyne's advance. [Description of image] Historic Sites Fort Ingoldsby built 1709 Fort Winslow built 1756 Montressor's Blockhouse & Storehouse Barracks 1758 Schuylers Supply Depot 1777
Scotia Naval Supply Depot
Scotia Naval Supply Depot: 1942, Schenectady County, Scotia. The depot was built in 1942-43 as a storage and supply depot for naval forces along the Atlantic coast and Europe. Mostly stored large items such as boilers, turbines and reduction gears. Home of the Navy's Landing Craft Maintenance and Battle Damage Program and the Navy's Automotive and Handling Equipment Spare Parts Program. Employment peaked in 1945 at 2342. In 1947 five storage facilities were improved as permanent storage facilities for large machine tools. During the Korean War home for the Navy's Specifications, Forms and Publication Center. Recently most of the depot has closed and reverted to commercial use. A small Naval Reserve and Surplus Property Operation remains.
Scott, Camp Winfield
Camp Winfield Scott: 1860, Suffolk County, Long Island. Near what later was Camp Black.
Fort Scott: 1814, Clinton County, Plattsburgh. One of three redoubts between Saranac River and Lake on Platt's Point, 8 cannon no buildings. Part of Land Battle in Battle of Plattsburgh, War of 1812. See Plattsburgh Battle Forts for story and map.
Seneca Army Depot
Senaca Army Depot: 1941, Seneca County, Seneca Falls. Near Sampson Naval Training Center (1942) (now a State Park, except for Officer Row) and the Sampson Army Airfield (1950 former SNTC) (airstrip part of the Depot), and the Naval Hospital (now state property). Major ammunition depot for the East Coast. Started in 1941 as a 11,500 acre ammunition dump with an aviation runway. The North Depot Activity was developed in 1956 and included storage of special weapons for the Griffiss AFB. The special weapons support (north) post was merged with the Depot in 1961 and was vacated upon closure of Griffiss in 1993. Two large GSA warehouses were built in 1953 and 54. The depot is in closure operations since listed to be closed in 1995. Future disposition unknown.
Fort Setauket: 1777, Suffolk County, Setauket. Occupied by a Tory Battalion the Presbyterian Church on Strong's Neck Road was fortified. The post was enclosed at a distance of 30 feet with 6 foot high earthworks topped with a palisade of 6 foot pickets. The parapet included interior "steps" for firing positions. American attacks repulsed in August 1777 and December 1777. Abandoned in early 1778. Local citizens restored the church (which later burned and was rebuilt) and removed the earthworks.
Camp Shanks: Jun 1943-July 1946, Rockland County, Orangeburg. Camp Shanks was a large staging area for troops going overseas through the New York ports of embarkation. 1944 had Italian Service Units. Hospital was used for debarkation hospital at the end of the war. After war, used as a staging area for German POW repatriation. Closed and sold after the war.
Fort Skenesborough: 1759, 1775-77, 1812, Washington County, Whitehall. The first structure here was a blockhouse in 1759 with a barracks on a hill to the west of Wood Creek, which still existed in 1775. The site is between the Presbyterian Church and the Masonic Temple. At the start of the Revolutionary War the Americans took Skenesborough (Philip Skene was a Loyalist) and built new fortifications strating in October 1776. This site was also the shipyards for General Arnold's Lake Champlain fleet. Built very near the 1759 site was a barracks and a fortified stockade described as an irregular polygon. Retreating before Burgoyne in July 1777 the Americans attempted to burn the fort. The British repaired and garrisoned the fort along with fortifying Skene's stone barn, for three weeks before continuing on to Saratoga. During the War of 1812 a new blockhouse was constructed within the ruins of the old fort to protect the shipyards.
Fort Slocum: 1861, Davids Island (80 acres), near Rye, NY. Named for Major General Henry W. Slocum, hero of Antietam and Chancellorsville. 1861 used as a Medical Facility with 22 temporary structures built to house 1,800 Confederate POWs. After Gettysburg grew to over 2,538 then later used as a Coastal Artillery post. In 1921 gun emplacements included Battery Overton, 2 - 12" Mortars Battery Haskin, 2 - 12" Mortars Battery Kinney, 2 - 3" Pedestal Battery Fraser, 2 - 3" Pedestal AA, 2 - 3" For more information see Coastal Defense Study Group (http://www.cdsg.org/) and Fort Slocum ( http://www.home.earthlink.net/~michaelacavanaugh/id1.html) [Links open new windows] Taken from Joe McCusker's list of Air Force Bases www.airforcebase.net/usaf/joeslist.html [link opens new window] Slocum AFB, Davids Island, New Rochelle, N.Y. (Headquarters First Air Force was at Ft. Slocum from 1946 until 1949. Ft. Slocum, on an island near New York City and accessible only by ferry boat, was redesignated Slocum AFB in June 1949. Headquarters First Air Force moved to Mitchel AFB four months later. The base was then looked after by the 166-person 2226th Standby Base Squadron, and later by a much smaller fire guard, until June 30, 1950, when the New York District Engineer assumed custody of the property and Slocum AFB ceased to exist. Ft. Slocum was reactivated as an Army post late in 1950, and closed in 1965. Twice swept by fires, the island--which is owned by the City of New Rochelle--has been in ruins for many years.) The following was contributed by Joseph Tabaco ,TSG, NYANG (Ret): Established as Northeast Air District on October 19, 1940. Activated on December 18, 1940 at Mitchel Field, New York, assigned to Northeast (later, Eastern) Defense Command, U.S. Army. Redesignated 1st Air Force on April 9, 1941 and First Air Force on September 18, 1942. Assigned to Army Air Forces on September 17, 1943; Continental Air Forces on April 16, 1945; and Air Defense Command on March 21, 1946. Moved to Fort Slocum (later, Slocum AFB), New York, in June 1946. Assigned to Continental Air Command on December 1, 1948. Moved to Mitchel AFB, New York, in October 1949. Discontinued on June 23, 1958. Activated on January 20, 1966, assigned to Air (later, Aerospace) Defense Command, and organized on April 1, 1966, at Stewart AFB, New York. Inactivated on December 31, 1969. www.maxwell.af.mil/au/afhra/wwwroot/rso/numbered_airforce_index.html [link opens new window] This is a list of bases that had no useable airfield during the time period they were officially called "Air Force Base." www.airforcebase.net/usaf/capitalb.html [link opens new window] NIKE: New York Nike Site NY-15C USAF: Slocum AFB This Nike facility, on Davids Island was operational from approximately 1955 - 1960. Fort Slocum transferred from the Army to the Air Force sometime in the late 1940s. It was redesignated Slocum AFB on 10 Jun 1949, and only remained in the Air Force inventory a short time. Disposition after Nike use is unknown. www.airforcebase.net/usaf/usafnike.html [link opens new window] From 1951 to 1979 the Chaplain School was situated at four posts in the New York City area: Fort Slocum (1951-1962; Fort Hamilton (1962-1974); Fort Wadsworth (1974-1979); and Fort Monmouth, New Jersey (1979-1995). www.usachcs.army.mil/HISTORY/SchoolHist/HistorySchool.htm [link opens new window] Fort Slocum (1863 - 1928/1965), Davids Island Located offshore from New Rochelle. Originally built as a military hospital complex and POW camp. Nearby Hart Island was also used. First fortified in 1878. Batteries here were an unnamed 1898 battery, Battery Haskin (1897 - 1919), Battery Overton (1897 - 1919) partially destroyed, Battery Practice (1896 - 1899) partially buried, Battery Kinney (1904 - 1917) destroyed, and Battery Fraser (1901 - 1917) destroyed. Became Slocum Air Force Base (NIKE Missile Base) from 1946 - 1950, and 1955 - 1965, and also used for the Armed Forces Information School, an Army Chaplain School, and a training and recruitment center (1919 - 1946). The island now sits abandoned and overgrown. A 15-inch Rodman cannon sits by the wharf. www.geocities.com/naforts/nycity2.html [link opens new window] When doing searches for Ft Slocum, be careful as there is an older Ft Slocum in the DC area
Camp Smith: 1882/5, Westchester County, Peekskill. New York Militia Camp. Original camp grounds acquired in 1885. Known as Camp Townsend in 1898 for the State's Adjutant General during the Spanish-American War mobilizations. Enlarged in 1913 and renamed for Governor Smith, 1914 and 1923 to its present size of nearly 2,000 acres. [Description of third image] Camp Smith New York National Guard Training camp estabalished 1882. Contains 1900 acres named for Alfred E. Smith, Governor of New York. This brief history has been culled from a series of six articles that ran from February to July 1925 in The New York National Guardsman magazine. The author was LTC William R. Wright. Part I - Terrian The present reservation comprises nearly 2,000 acres. It stretches for about two and a half miles along the Hudson River, extending from Peekskill or Annsville Creek on the south to the Putnam County line on the North, and goes back from the river for almost two miles, touching the Albany Post Road (State Route 9) at one point. It formed the northeast corner of the great Cortlandt Manor of Colonial days. The original camp ground consisting of the west camp and parade grounds extending to the 500 yard butts and excluding the higher ground of the Ordnance and Superintendent’s houses (buildings 89 and 90), was about 150 acres of the McCoy Estate. The state initially leased 97 acres of this site in May 1882. Site improvements were commenced on 6 June 1882, with the first encampment on 1 July 1882. The site was purchased in 1885. With appropriations in 1913 and 1914 the remaining 187 acres of the McCoy farm was purchased, together with smaller parcels aggregating about 65 acres owned by Theodore Wendover and Clifford and Franklin Couch. This carried the property down to the Albany Post Road and the Annsville Road, and provided for a backstop for the present target range. In 1923 the largest addition to the terrain was made by the purchase from the Van Cortlandt Estate of some 1,485 acres, giving the state ownership of all of the hills north of the camp to include Anthony’s nose. Main historical and geographic points of interest are Anthony’s Nose, Manitou Mountain, the old copper mine, the remains of Revolutionary forts and, of course, the Military Road. Anthony’s Nose rises to an elevation of 900 feet and is one of the best known peaks along the river. See HISTORY OF NAME. A trail leads to its summit from the military road just north of the camp, and this trail and access is part of the Appalachian Trail which crosses the Hudson at the Bear Mountain Bridge and goes North up Route 90. Manitou Mountain, 760 feet high, from which fine views to the west and south can be had. The old copper mine was on Roa Hook opposite the Camp entrance and has probably been destroyed by mining operations, as has the remains of Fort Independence which was also on Roa Hook. The Military Road (Road A) was started in 1891 to connect Garrison (opposite West Point) and the NYS Camp. It was only constructed to slightly north of the Camp by 1897 when funds ran out. See Revolutionary War for forts, etc., in the area. Part II - Early Usage 1882: The first regular encampments started on 1 July 1882 with the 23rd Infantry of 428 men. The succeeding years were marked by steady improvement in training methods and increasing use of the Camp for that purpose. In 1889 a new mess hall was built, the Military Road started in 1891, the first field problem made its appearance in 1894 to be followed by more elaborate ones to include the regimental "march-out" to Lake Mohegan. This period was marked by conflicting opinions between encampments with marksmanship training, and increasingly more complex maneuvers. 1904: The Manassa maneuvers in 1904 shattered the routine of years. Maneuver training became paramount. Units were scattered for larger maneuver training to Massachusetts, Pine Camp (Fort Drum), Connecticut, and Camp Whitman (Black River - Fort Drum). Peekskill was still used occasionally by 1911 as the minutia of drill and routine following maneuvers, although it was now primarily used as a rifle range for New York City troops and for Officers and non-commissioned officers schools. It was in the old White House (removed 1923) that the council of war of commanding officers was held by Gen O’Ryan prior to the call for the Mexican Border Service. WWI: In 1917 the 15th NY (presently the 369th) trained at Peekskill [prior to their going to WWI and subsequent glory]. The Camp was also used throughout the war by the 1st Provisional Regiment, NYG, as a post during their services on duty guarding the NYC water supply, and also by the U.S. Navy. During the reconstruction of the New York Guard after the War, and its Federal recognition as the New York National Guard, the Camp played a gradually increasing role. 1920 saw only officer and NCO schools as Regiments were federally recognized and sent to U. S. Army posts for their summer training. 1921 all of the NYC Regiments trained at Camp. 1922 through 1925 all NYNG Infantry units occupied the Camp. POST WWI: Major improvements were made to the Camp from 1925 through the early 30’s. In 1925 the target ranges were reconstructed in their present locations, the Broccy Creek Reservoir was constructed as was the present sewage plant and incinerator (buildings 65,, 64), the "new" officer’s mess was constructed in 1930 (the present building # 79). In 1931 all of the trails were given names from the sectors in Belgium and Northwestern France, where the Twenty-Seventh Division made a glorious record in the fall of 1918, none of these names are known to be used today. Part III - Present Usage 1960-70: The next major renovation of the Camp that comprises its current configuration and use occurred in the 1960’s and 70’s. New modern brick barracks and support facilities were constructed in 1964 (501, 506), 1965 (504, 505), 1967 (507, 503), and 1968 (508). In 1973 Baker Hall (502) was constructed to replace the old wooden Post Exchange building from the early 1920s. The USP7FO was relocated from Brooklyn to a new Warehouse (513) in 1973, and an additional building was added in 1984(514). This period continued much as before, with major Annual Training periods being done at major U. S. Army posts and the Camp primarily being used for weekend training and schools. Marksmanship training has taken on a major role here as many indoor ranges at armories were closed in the 1980s due to lead and ventilation problems. Present: Most recently the Camp has become a more permanent home for numerous activities. The Headquarters 53rd Troop Command occupied building 501 from 1995 until December 1997 when it moved to Valhalla and was replaced on-site in January 1998 by the Headquarters 1st Battalion 53rd Troop Command. The FBI, DEA and Postal are permanent tenants with daily use of the ranges for their marksmanship programs. The Peekskill Warehouse (513) is one of the main full time supply activities for the NYARNG, and full time maintenance activities are conducted at Combined Support Maintenance Shop A and Organizational Maintenance Shops 16 and 20. Recently the Empire State Military Academy, which had been training officers and NCOs since 1920, was reorganized as part of a national effort and redesignated the 106th Regimental Training Institute. The 106th RTI occupies building 48. The 199th Army Band, "The Governor's Own." has long been a presence in building 84, and Company A(-) 1st Bn 105th Infantry (light) is in building 119. Future: Ongoing work includes major reconstructions of the facility’s antiquated infrastructure, such as water, sewer, and electrical distribution systems. Also in design is a new BOQ to be constructed north of 508. Camp Smith remains a valuable asset for small arms weapons training and military academy and youth training. Recently the National Guard Bureau has classified the camp as a Collective Training Area (CTA) or an official Annual Training (AT) site for Battalion sized units. Due to terrain restrictions the camp caters mainly to Light Infantry, Signal, and Maintenance units. Camp Smith is also a major testing ground in the field of simulations and high tech training. The Revolutionary War Peekskill was the center of many military events during the War of the Revolution. It was located at the gateway of the Highlands, which guarded the water communication into the heart of New York State, and also formed part of that mountain barrier, extending to the southwest, behind which Washington so skillfully operated his little army. It was a part of Washington’s "Hindenburg Line," but unlike a certain other well known Hindenburg Line, it was never broken. Driven back at times, the Americans always pushed forward again, and the close of the war found the gateway still firmly in their possession. The main line of resistance was at first directly on the line of the Manitou. Later it was near West Point, but always the outpost line was either of Peekskill or at Verplanck’s Point, a few miles south. The forts located in the vicinity were: British Map Fort Lafayette, Verplanck’s (Verplancke’s) Point south of Peekskill on the East bank of the Hudson. British landed 22 Mar 1777 in Lents Cove near Peekskill, attacked Peekskill, encounter near Peekskill Creek. September 1777 British landed a force at Peekskill, burned barracks and stores. Fort Independence, on Roa (or Rahway) Hook, east bank of the Hudson, opposite the entrance to Camp Smith. All trace of this fort was obliterated by the operations of a sand and gravel company in the early 20’s. Fort Lookout, between Peekskill and Canopus Creeks, east of Camp Smith. In 1925 a clump of dead trees on the hill were inside the old earthen works. Fort Constitution, On an east bank island opposite West Point. Fort Stony Point, West bank of Hudson accross from Fort Lafayette. Captured by British, starting point of attack 6 October against Forts Clinton and Montgomery. Later recaptured by "Mad Anthony" Wayne. Forts Clinton and Montgomery, on west bank of Hudson south and north respecfully of the Popoloen Creek, accross from Anthony’s Nose, now directly adjacent to the Bear Mountain Bridge. British forces under Sir Henry Clinton attacked 6 Oct 1777 American forces Commanded by Generals George and James Clinton. The Americans were defeated, a desperate fight between Lake Sinnipink and the river (rear of Bear Mountain Hotel) gave the lake the name "Bloody Pond." Fort Putnam, at West Point. Another Fort Clinton at West Point on the Hudson. Boom and Chain, accross the river at Fort Montgomery to Anthony’s Nose, about where the Bear Mountain Bridge is now. Capture of Forts Clinton and Montgomery 6 Oct 1777 led to the abandonment of the American fleet and the British breaking through on 7 Oct 1777. The British went upriver as far as Kingston, which they burned. At this time a force was advancing from the North under General Burgoyne, to meet with the British fleet. The defeat and surrender of Burgoyne to General Gates in Saratoga on 17 Oct 1777 ended this threat. Recently a Revolutionary War gun emplacement site has been found near the base of Anthony’s Nose where the boom and chain would have been anchored. The above is only the barest outlines of the interesting history of the vicinity of Camp Smith during the Revolution. Details may be read in Bolton’s or Scharf’s "History of Westchester County," or Washington Irving’s "Life of Washington." The above information was extracted from articles by LTC William R. Wright in the Feb, Mar, and April 1925 issues of The New York National Guardsman magazine. Part 5 - History of a Name: Naming of Anthony's Nose In the late 1600’s, families soon became identified with certain localities. Washington Irving speaks of the Van Cortlandts of Groatan, or Croton Point, and the Van Grols of Anthony’s Nose. His account of the naming of the latter promontory in honor of Anthony Van Corlear, the town trumpeter of New Amsterdam (New York), is given in his Knickerbocker History of New York. No other reason having been discovered for the title in question we publish his account of the christening with the sole remark "interesting if true." "It must be known that the nose of Anthony Van Corlear was of very lusty size, strutting boldly from his countenance like a mountain of Golconda, being sumptuously bedecked with rubies and other precious stones, -- the true regalia of a king of good fellows, which jolly Bacchus grants to all who bouse it heartily at the flagon. Now thus it happened, that bright and early in the morning the good Anthony, having washed his burly visage, was leaning over the quarter railing of the galley, contemplating it in the glassy wave below. Just at this moment the illustrious sun, breaking in all its splendor from behind a high bluff of the highlands, did dart one of his most potent beams full on the refulgent nose of the sounder of brass -- the reflection of which shot straightway down, hissing hot, into the water, and killed a mighty sturgeon that was sporting beside the vessel! This huge monster, being with infinite labor hoisted on board, furnished a luxurious repast to all the crew, being accounted of excellent flavor, excepting around the wound, where it smacked a little of brimstone; and this, on my veracity, was the first time sturgeon was eaten in these parts by Christian people. When this astonishing miracle came to be known to Peter Stuyvesant, and that he tasted of the unknown fish, he, as may well be supposed, marvelled exceedingly, and as a monument thereof, he gave the name Anthony’s Nose to a stout promontory in the neighborhood; and it has continued to be called Anthony’s Nose ever since that time." The above information was extracted an article by LTC William R. Wright in the March 1925 issue of The New York National Guardsman magazine.
South Battery: 1810, New York City Harbor defenses. At foot of Bridge Street, foot of Manhattan, probably east of Castle Clinton which was known as South West Battery. This would be Battery Park or what in 1776 was known as the Grand Battery below Fort George. South Battery (2): 1812, Kings County, Governor's Island. Built to guard Buttermilk Channel between Island and Brooklyn in 1812. On southern tip prior to island's expansion with fill from Brooklyn Tunnel. Later used as an Officer's Club.
South Redoubt: 1778, Putnam County, Village of Garrison, American. As part of the enlarged defenses of West Point two redoubts (North and South) were built two miles southeast of Constitution Island in the highlands enroute to Continental Village. Constructed on two sides of a hill now known as Fort Hill between the Village of Garrison and US Route 9.
Southampton Old Fort
Town of Southampton Old Fort: 1777-8, Suffolk County. Site of British fort during occupation.
Sow (Oquaga), Battery Old
Battery Old Sow (Oquaga): 1812-14, Erie County, Buffalo. Near present City Water Plant, earthwork with one 8 inch Mortar. To the North was Fort Tompkins, and to the South was the Gookins Battery.
Speed Blockhouse: 1806, Tompkins County, Town of Caroline (Speedsville). On NY Route 79 - 1 and 1/2 mile west of town.
Spiral Fort: : 1776, Kings County, Brooklyn. See Fort Corkscrew.
Spring Valley (NY-99) Nike Base
Spring Valley (NY-99) Nike Base: 1956-63, Integrated Fire Control Area Nike-Ajax Missiles, launcher area was Ramapo. Inactivated 1963. Site owned by East Ramapo School District and is partially intact. For more information see alpha.fdu.edu/~bender/NY99.html (link opens new window)
St. Anne, Fort
Fort St. Anne: 1667, Isle La Motta, Lake Champlain, Vermont. French fort. For more information see www.historiclakes.org/explore/Exploring.html#FORT STE. ANNE (link opens new window)
St. Croix, Fort
Fort St.Croix (1): 1620s, Rensselaer County, West of Town of North Hoosick. Dutch stockade with cannon on North east bank of the Hoosick River. Destroyed some years later. Fort St. Croix (2): 1750s, Rensselaer County. Built to protect Dutch settlement and guard Houstatonic Valley during French and Indian War.
St. George, Fort
Fort St. George: 1777, Suffolk County, Mastic, Smith's Point. British, 1777-1780, a triangular fort included existing manor houses in two corners and a fortification in the third. Served as British supply base, destroyed in Nov 1780 raid.
St. Theresa, Fort
Fort St. Theresa: 1665, Richelieu River, Quebec, Canada. French fort at head of rapids near Lake Champlain.
Fort Stanwix: 1758, Oneida County, Rome. Built in summer 1758 to guard a strategic portage along a major transportation route. Fort Stanwix guarded the centuries old Oneida Carrying Place. This strategic Iroquois Confederacy portage in upstate New York bridged the waterways between the Atlantic Ocean (Hudson - Mohawk) and the Great Lakes (Wood Cr - Oneida Lk, Oswego R.). After the British conquered Canada in 1760 it gradually ceased to be a military post. During the American Revolution (then also known as Fort Schuyler), the Americans rebuilt the ruined fort in the summer of 1776. British military forces were repulsed while attempting to besiege the fort. In this battle of 3 Aug 1777 it is claimed that the Stars and Stripes first flew in the face of the enemy. American militia and Oneida allies tried to come to the aid of Fort Stanwix, but were cut off in an ambush at Oriskany, considered one of the bloodiest engagements of the war. Both these battles were part of St Leger's attempt towards Albany to meet up with Gen Burgoyne who was defeated at Saratoga. In 1781 the fort was virtually destroyed by fire and flood and substantially rebuilt and its original name restored. During the War of 1812 it was seriously neglected and a blockhouse was built as an emergency on the parade ground. Beginning in 1828 the fortifications were gradually dismantled. From 1970 to 1977 the National Park Service reconstructed the fort.
Star Redoubt: 1776, New York City, See Lispenard's Redoubt.
Fort Stark: 1812-15, Jefferson County, Sackets Harbor. A minor redoubt in a fortified line of 4 such "forts" (Kentucky, Virginia, Chauncey, Stark) anchored at Fort Pike on the Bay (later Madison Barracks) protecting the land side of Sackets Harbor.
Ste. Frederic, Fort
Fort Ste. Frederic (at Crown Point): 1734/37- 1759, Essex County, Crown Point. Fortifications were started by the French in 1734. Until 1759 Ft. Ste. Frederic was the seat of French power on Lake Champlain. The French destroyed the Redoute of the fort in 1759 before the advancing British. The British occupied the remaining buildings as a Hospital until the construction of Fort Crown Point was completed. Foundations remain, open to public.
Ste. Marie Degannentaha
Fort Ste. Marie Degannentaha: 1656, Onondaga County, Onondaga Lake, Syracuse. Constructed in 1656 to protect a French settlement, abandoned about 1658. Current reconstruction based on original Jesuit plans of the French Fort and Stockade.
Fort Sterling: March 1776, Kings County, Brooklyn. The first American fort built in Brooklyn, it was located on a bluff at the very edge of the Brooklyn Heights. The site today is Columbia Steet between Clark and Orange Streets. Also known as Fort Half-Moon because of its open back. The fort was designed to command the East River. Taken by the British in August 1776 it was continuously garrisoned until their evacuation in 1783. This site was not used again. Another fort referred to as a grand citadel to be called The Congress was to have been constructed to the rear on higher ground at Henry and Pierrepoint Streets but was not started, but was where the British later built Fort Brooklyn.
Fort Stevens: Constructed on Hallett's Point, Queens, East River, 1814. Included a blockhouse on Mill Rock in the River at Hell Gate. Plans from Feb 1776 showed forts on both sides of the East River. Opposite here was Horn's Hook Battery. These fortifications may have dated from 1776.
Stewart Air Force Base
Stewart Air Force Base: 1940s, Orange County, Newburgh. Stewart International Airport is located almost entirely in the Town of New Windsor, Orange County, New York. The "Stewart Newburgh" designation used by the airlines is that the Stewart family gave the land to the City of Newburgh for a city airport in the 1930's. Stewart is named after Capt. Lachlan Stewart, who skippered schooners and other sailing vessels about 1850-1870. During World War II the City of Newburgh turned the airport over to the United States Government for the purposes of training West Point cadets to fly. The field grew and at the end of World War II it became Stewart Air Force Base. Stewart was used for North American Air Defense (Headquarters US Army Air Defense Command Region I) until 1972, when the Air Force determined that the base was excess, and deeded Stewart Air Force Base to the State of New York. See also SAGE for information on Air Defense Control Center, control for Suffolk BOMARCs. Now Stewart Army Sub Post of West Point, Stewart International Airport, and the New York Air National Guard has the largest C-5 Unit at Stewart. The Marine Corps also maintains a wing of C-130 aircraft at Stewart. The two military organizations occupy brand new state of the art military facilities. Stewart International Airport has 15,000 ft runway, the longest on the eastern seaboard.
Stillwater Blockhouse: 1777 era, Stillwater, Saratoga Co. The Stillwater Blockhouse is historically unique. It was built in part with timbers from Revolutionary era structures on the Neilsen Farm which stood within what is now Saratoga National Historical Park and was part of the Bemis Heights fortifications. It replicates the early 18th Century blockhouses of the region, but was actually built in 1927 as NYS turned the Saratoga Battlefield into an historical park. The "Battlefield blockhouse" was used as a visitor center and museum. Later when a new visitors center was constructed by the NPS, and as the structure was not authentic to the battlefield, it was donated in 1975 to the Town of Stillwater. It has been placed in a small park on the Hudson River, and is dedicated to local history. In Colonial times historic forts and blockhouses existed on nearby sites (1701 Ft Ingoldsby, 1756 Ft Winslow, 1758 Montresor's Blockhouse).
Stony Point: 1779, Rockland County, Stony Point. Fortifications and Battlefield. "Gibralter of the Hudson" The British had captured the peninsula of Stony Point , and a small American Blockhouse, in May 1779, and began to fortify it by cutting down trees, and by erecting an earthen fort and two barriers called abatis. In addition, two British ships offered extra protection, and the newly-captured fort at Verplanck's Point (Fort Lafayette (1)), across the river, could be signaled by rocket for reinforcements. The commander of the garrison at Stony Point felt certain that his defenses were secure, calling the new fort his "little Gibraltar." Washington responded to Clinton's move by moving his troops to protect the American fortifications at West Point. On July 15, 1779, Wayne's troops began their march from Fort Montgomery, near the present-day Bear Mountain Bridge. Two columns swept up the treeless slopes, and a third went up the cliffs, arriving in the fort within minutes of each other. The heaviest fighting lasted half an hour, and by 1AM the garrison had surrendered. Three days later, Washington abandoned Stony Point because he knew it could not be defended against the combined might of the British army and navy. Although the British returned to Stony Point and rebuilt the fort, British troops were withdrawn in October because of insufficient reinforcements, and never again threatened the Hudson Highlands. The victory at Stony Point was the last major battle in the north, and boosted American morale. Battlefield is a State Park.
Stratton Air National Guard Base
Stratton Air National Guard Base: Schenectady County, Scotia. Need base history. [Description of image] Stratton ANGB, Scotia, Main Entrance Gate -- Photo by ??
Suffolk BOMARC Base
Suffolk BOMARC Base: 1957, Suffolk County, Westhampton Beach. Site of 1st BOMARC Missile Interceptor Station. The BOMARC A was a Surface-to-Air Cruise Missile with a length of 45 feet, 3 inches and a wingspan of 18 feet, 2 inches. It's range was 230 miles. Following initial research and development activities after World War II, the pilotless interceptor aircraft or Surface-to-Air Missile (SAM) was envisioned as an instant readiness supersonic cruise aircraft with a range of several hundred miles. The SAM concept was created primarily to protect the U.S. mainland from enemy aircraft. By 1949, the first SAM designs were presented to the U.S. Air Force for consideration. These included plans for the Bomarc. The first production vehicle became known as Bomarc A, while a more advanced version became known as the Bomarc B. see Niagara Falls BOMARC Base. Bomarc was the first weapons system to employ an active homing system. Interceptions were controlled by a Semi-Automatic Ground Environment (SAGE) system from Stewart AFB, see SAGE designed to alert and control the SAM toward its target. A Bomarc missile prototype was first test-flown on September 10, 1952. The operational version was ready for its first test flight by February, 1955. Boeing began delivering operational Bomarc missiles to the U.S. Air Force in 1957, with a total of 366 deployed by 1960 at bases which could house one or two 28-missile squadrons. Initially two 28 Missile Squadrons of Bomarc A deployment occurred at Suffolk Air Force Base, New York. Deactivated 1969. See BOMARC for more information.
Suffolk County Air Force Base
Suffolk County Air Force Base: 1950, Suffolk County, Westhampton Beach. USAF Interceptor base, picking up air defense of Metropolitan NY from Mitchel Field until that mission was transferred to McGuire AFB, NJ. Then became 1st BOMARC Missle Interceptor Station.
Suffolk County Airport
Suffolk County Airport: 1969, Suffolk County, Westhampton Beach. Now Gabreski Airport and the Westhampton Beach Air National Guard Base.
Fort Sullivan: 1779, Tioga. Built by Americans during the Clinton-Sullivan expedition against the Iroguois in 1779.
Fort Sutherland: 1778, Kings County, Brooklyn. British rename of Fort Greene (1776).
Swart's Fort: 1776, Schenectady County, Three miles west of Scotia, at Tinker Hill. A blockhouse constructed by CPT Teunis Swart. Brick house surrounded by Palisade and armed with swivel Cannon piece. Revolutionary war period. [Description of image] Tinker Hill Site of blockhouse near river bank. Built by Capt. teunis Swart. Stockaded and armed with field piece in war of Revolution.
Fort Swift: 1812, Kings County, Brooklyn. Built on site of former Fort Corkscrew (1776) by General Joseph G. Swift. Site bordered by Atlantic Avenue, Court, Pacific, and Clinton Streets.
Swift's Battery: 1812-14, Erie County, Buffalo. One of a series of batteries on the Niagara River in Buffalo. Located North of Dudley's Battery that was just North of Ferry Street. No description of guns mounted. Further North at the mouth of the Conjaquadie's Creek was Sailor's Battery.