Springfield Armory National Historic Site

Springfield Armory National Historic Site Springfield Armory National Historic Site commemorates the critical role of the nation’s first armory by preserving and interpreting the world's largest historic US military small arms collection, along with historic archives, buildings, and landscapes.
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March 22 is World Water Day! Since 1993, World Water Day has been used to celebrate water and raise awareness of the bil...
03/22/2020

March 22 is World Water Day!
Since 1993, World Water Day has been used to celebrate water and raise awareness of the billions of people around the world without access to safe water.

Here at Springfield Armory National Historic Site, we are highlighting how water was an integral part of Armory operations since it was first established.

When the armory was established in 1794, it required a significant power source. By the year 1798, two buildings were completed along the mill river, about one mile south of the hill shops. These were known as the water shops.
The water shops were able to harness the reliable flow of the Mill River to turn metal water wheels which powered machines like trip hammers, polishing discs, and grindstones. As time went on and new technologies were invented, the operations at the water shops were updated. The water shops consolidated from three locations to just one to improve efficiency, and they were able to incorporate steam power and eventually electrical power.

The water shops shut down all operation with the closing of the armory in 1968, and the buildings have been converted to a privately owned site. However, visitors are still welcome to view the exterior of the old water shops, which is now on the National Register of Historic Places. Though the water shops are no longer actively used to produce firearms for the U.S. Army, the Mill River continues its never-ending flow through Springfield, reminding us of the many ways in which water affects our lives.

03/21/2020

March 21st is world Poetry Day! Here at the Springfield Armory, we’re getting a little creative. Check out our poems below, and add your own in the comments! Note: They don’t have to be limericks 😊

I love the Springfield Armory
But it’s closed and I am ornery
So much innovation
But now renovation
I’ll look to the Spring for harmony
.
.
.
The M1 was made by Garand
He built it with his own hand
It was not ordinary
And quite legendary
This invention was in high demand
.
.
.
Henry Longfellow also wrote a poem inspired by the Organ of Muskets here at Springfield Armory. Check it out here: https://www.nps.gov/spar/learn/historyculture/arsenal-at-springfield.htm

Let’s say a hearty Facebook hello to our historic weapons supervisor, Ranger Susan! Susan has been a park ranger at Spri...
03/17/2020

Let’s say a hearty Facebook hello to our historic weapons supervisor, Ranger Susan! Susan has been a park ranger at Springfield Armory National Historic Site since 2014. One of her responsibilities as historic weapons supervisor is to attend a two-week historic weapons training in Alabama every two years. Susan represented the armory well, dressed as a civilian armory worker, including her Woman Ordnance Worker (WOW) bandanna.

Since the Springfield Armory produced shoulder weapons for 174 years, from 1794 – 1968, Susan is familiar with a large variety of firearms. If you have visited the Springfield Armory before, you might have seen Ranger Susan demonstrating her skills with these historic weapons in a blank fire demonstration.

We hope you learned a lot at your training, Susan, welcome back!

“Life, uh, finds a way.”-Dr. Ian Malcolm, Jurassic ParkI bet you didn’t think Springfield Armory National Historic Site ...
03/14/2020

“Life, uh, finds a way.”
-Dr. Ian Malcolm, Jurassic Park

I bet you didn’t think Springfield Armory National Historic Site had a connection to Jurassic Park right?
But we do!

During the construction of the armory water shops in the early 1800s, a blasting operation uncovered the fossilized bones of what was later identified as Anchisaurus polyzelus.
This specimen was one of the earliest dinosaurs to be discovered and reported in North America and remains an important part of the early history of dinosaur paleontology in North America.

Since the Anchisaurus polyzelus lived during the JURASSIC period, and the Springfield Armory is part of the National PARK Service, you can think of us as a Jurassic Park from now on.

Do you miss visiting Springfield Armory National Historic Site? Well we miss you too! While the museum is closed for cri...
03/10/2020

Do you miss visiting Springfield Armory National Historic Site? Well we miss you too!

While the museum is closed for critical system upgrades, we thought we would share a sneak peak of what the museum floor looks like today. With all the work going on, it is very important that we protect every one of the displays. Even our historic Organ of Muskets has a custom built box to protect it from top to bottom.

Here at Springfield Armory National Historic Site, we are celebrating International Women’s Day by highlighting some of ...
03/08/2020

Here at Springfield Armory National Historic Site, we are celebrating International Women’s Day by highlighting some of the amazing women who worked at the Springfield Armory. Throughout the history of the Springfield Armory, women worked in many different departments, including machine operators, inspectors, and assemblers. In World War I, 15% of the workers were women. At the height of World War II, over 5,000 Women Ordnance Workers (WOWs) comprised 42% of the Armory's workforce.

The WOW concept was created to foster patriotic spirit and identification with the war effort by women working in the US Army's war production sites. WOWs wore red bandanas with distinctive markings of a flaming bomb not only for safety reasons but from a sense of pride, accomplishment and achievement in their contributions to the war effort.

Georg Luger was born March 6, 1849. In honor of his birthday, we are highlighting the famous firearm that bears his name...
03/06/2020

Georg Luger was born March 6, 1849. In honor of his birthday, we are highlighting the famous firearm that bears his name.

Pictured here is a part of the Springfield Armory collection - Georg Luger's own pistol - Luger Model 1902 Prototype 9MM Serial Number 10069B.
Notice the script initials, GL, on the rear of the weapon.

The most distinctive feature of the Luger pistol is the toggle-lock mechanism, which remains straight to resist the force of a detonating cartridge, but then buckles to allow the spent cartridge to eject and a new round to be loaded from the magazine.

The Luger pistol was very popular in Europe. It was the standard German sidearm through WWI and it was adopted as the service pistol in Swtizerland in 1900. When Georg Luger visited the United States in 1902 with a 9mm parabellum version of his pistol, the Springfield Armory was intrigued and wanted to test the capabilities of the weapon.

One year later, in May 1903, Luger and Hans Tauscher demonstrated the difference between the 7.65mm and the 9mm parabellum projectiles for a board of officers at the Springfield Armory. After testing the wounding capabilities of the two projectiles, the board decided that the 9mm was better suited to their service. But before it could be adopted, further testing was the required.

In April 1904, 50 9mm 1902 Luger pistols arrived from Berlin for testing by the Cavalry and Field Artillery Boards at Fort Riley, Kansas. After extensive testing the boards concluded that the Luger pistol was an accurate and powerful weapon. However, the weapon was also liable to jamming so frequently, that it was deemed practically useless.
With its complicated mechanism, it was decided that the Luger pistol was not suitable for military use in the United States.

March Forth! Not only is March 4th the only day of the year that is also a military command, but it is also National Hug...
03/04/2020

March Forth!
Not only is March 4th the only day of the year that is also a military command, but it is also National Hug a G.I. Day.
Show some love to the G.I.s in your life with a big hug (or handshake) and let them know how much you appreciate their service and sacrifice.

“The only piece of artillery ever devised to save lives.” This is often said about the gun that David A. Lyle developed ...
02/28/2020

“The only piece of artillery ever devised to save lives.”
This is often said about the gun that David A. Lyle developed in 1878. Lyle was assigned the task of assisting in the improvement of life saving apparatus for the U.S. Life Saving Service. After two years of experimentation and development at the Springfield Armory, the Lyle gun was created. The Lyle gun was both lightweight and accurate, allowing it to see use up and down the coast, assisting the men and women of the Life Saving Service in their duty to save stranded vessels.

Often in deadly storms, ships would run aground within sight of shore, where they would be battered by wind and waves. In situations like this, the Lyle gun could be loaded with a projectile to which a light line was attached. This projectile would be launched over the stranded vessel, allowing the ship’s crew to haul in and secure the line. Once the line was attached, a breeches buoy would be sent out to bring back the stranded crew one at a time. This proved to be a very effective way to save lives. In 1906 it was estimated that the Lyle Gun was responsible for saving approximately 4500 lives.

Happy Birthday George Washington! George Washington was born February 22, 1732 and accomplished many things throughout h...
02/22/2020

Happy Birthday George Washington!
George Washington was born February 22, 1732 and accomplished many things throughout his life as Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army and our nation’s first president. At Springfield Armory National Historic Site, George Washington holds a special place in our history as the one who authorized the establishment of the United States’ first national armories. In part to end the nation’s reliance on foreign weapons, Washington authorized armories in both Springfield, Massachusetts and Harper’s Ferry, Virginia (Now West Virginia). The Harper’s Ferry armory was burned down by Union forces during the Civil War, but the Springfield Armory went on to produce firearms for the United States Army until 1968, when production finally ceased.

Currently, the museum at the Springfield Armory National Historic Site is closed for critical systems upgrades, with an expected reopening date of April 1, 2020. However, the grounds remain open and accessible, so come and walk where George Washington once stood and ponder why this place was chosen as the site to build a national armory.

Valentine’s Day is a great opportunity to tell someone special how much you love them. During the Civil War, a soldier w...
02/14/2020

Valentine’s Day is a great opportunity to tell someone special how much you love them. During the Civil War, a soldier with a loved one back home would often receive love letters. In one rare case, it was these love letters that contributed to a soldier’s survival.

Confederate soldier and author Sam Watkins wrote: "… A lieutenant of the 4th Texas was struck during the fight at Chickamauga on the left breast above the heart by a Minie ball. Immediately, Val Giles saw the officer's sword fly from his grip and ‘he fell heavily to the ground, apparently dead. But he was not killed,’ said Giles, the bullet never entered his body, but embedded itself in his bundle of love letters. When the battle was over he took pride in showing his mutilated letters to his intimate friends....The bullet passed through eight of ten of them, and they were big, fat ones too! The bullet lodged against the last one received. He was the merriest soldier in that weary army."

Take some time this Valentine’s Day to write a letter to someone special. You never know how it might help them! Happy Valentine’s Day from Springfield Armory National Historic Site!

Looking for something to do on a rainy day? Stop by the Springfield Visitor Center (1319 Main St) downtown at 1pm today ...
02/07/2020

Looking for something to do on a rainy day? Stop by the Springfield Visitor Center (1319 Main St) downtown at 1pm today for volunteer Carl's presentation, "To Keep the Rabble Out".Learn about the growth of the Springfield Armory and the unique fence that surrounds this historic property. It's FREE!

Springfield Armory National Historic Site's cover photo
02/03/2020

Springfield Armory National Historic Site's cover photo

What a great event! Thanks to all the attendees, speakers, and partners who made this possible. Special thanks to Friend...
01/25/2020

What a great event! Thanks to all the attendees, speakers, and partners who made this possible. Special thanks to Friends of the Springfield Armory National Historic Site, STCC, Pioneer Valley History Network, and Springfield Cultural Council for organizing and supporting the event. Let's do it again!!!!

The most successful event ever held by Friends of Springfield Armory. Huge attendance at the Daniel Shays Symposium.

Hear Ye, Hear Ye!Two days to the Shays' Rebellion Symposium! Get your tickets now at shaysrebellion.eventbrite.comAny re...
01/23/2020

Hear Ye, Hear Ye!

Two days to the Shays' Rebellion Symposium!

Get your tickets now at shaysrebellion.eventbrite.com

Any remaining tickets will be available for purchase in person on Saturday on a first-come, first-served basis.

Hear Ye, Hear Ye!

Due to today's impending storm, the museum will be closing at 3:00pm.
01/18/2020

Due to today's impending storm, the museum will be closing at 3:00pm.

Update: Please be advised: Our visitor center and museum are currently closed due to ongoing critical systems upgrades p...
01/17/2020

Update: Please be advised: Our visitor center and museum are currently closed due to ongoing critical systems upgrades projects. Check back for updates!

The 2020 Shays Rebellion Symposium is just two weeks away! Get your tickets now!Tickets ($6) and Box Lunches ($10) here:...
01/11/2020

The 2020 Shays Rebellion Symposium is just two weeks away! Get your tickets now!
Tickets ($6) and Box Lunches ($10) here: http://shaysrebellion.eventbrite.com

What a great lineup!
Dennis Picard will be moderating two q&a panels after presentations by...

Tim Abbott (The Final Fight at Sheffield)
Dan Bullen (Shays Kerfuffle: A Peoples Perspective)
Steve Butz (Archaeology of the Shays Settlement)
Tom Goldscheider (Three Men in Debt: A Case Study on the Genesis of Shays)
Barbara Mathews (More than a Little Rebellion: Shays Legacy)
Adam Tomasi (The Contested Meanings of “Shays Rebellion Day” 1986)

Seasons Greetings from everyone here at Springfield Armory NHS!We will be closed December 23rd, 24th, and 25th.We will b...
12/22/2019

Seasons Greetings from everyone here at Springfield Armory NHS!

We will be closed December 23rd, 24th, and 25th.

We will be open again December 26 at 9 am! Until then, enjoy these historic holiday images from the Armory!

New England National Scenic Trail - NET
12/02/2019

New England National Scenic Trail - NET

The sun is shining on the NET! A perfect day to #optoutside.
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Sunrise from Mount Tom by @jamiemalcolmbrown
.
#hike50net #findyourtrail

Today is National Hiking Day! Check out the amazing trails of New England National Scenic Trail - NET And thanks to our ...
11/17/2019

Today is National Hiking Day!

Check out the amazing trails of New England National Scenic Trail - NET

And thanks to our trail partners Appalachian Mountain Club and Connecticut Forest & Park Association

https://newenglandtrail.org/

On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month the Great War came to an end. Today, on Veteran's Day, we celebrate t...
11/11/2019

On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month the Great War came to an end. Today, on Veteran's Day, we celebrate the service of all U.S. military veterans.

The Springfield Armory celebrated Armed Forces Day to honor all of the generations of military veterans.
#VeteransDay #MilitaryHeritage #SPAR #FindYourPark #EncuentraTuParque

Springfield Armory National Historic Site's cover photo
10/31/2019

Springfield Armory National Historic Site's cover photo

As the temperature drops and the daylight hours get shorter that can only mean one thing:Springfield Armory NHS hours ar...
10/30/2019

As the temperature drops and the daylight hours get shorter that can only mean one thing:

Springfield Armory NHS hours are changing!

Starting on Monday, November 4th the Springfield Armory National Historic Site will be closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. We be open Wednesday through Sunday from 9 am to 5 pm.

This is awesome.🤣😂🤣
10/25/2019

This is awesome.🤣😂🤣

With a world renowned collection of historic weapons, Springfield Armory National Historic Site is often considered the best National Park site to ride out the zombie apocalypse. This certainly doesn’t take into account the fact that most people have no idea how to load a Civil War musket. #findyourpark

10/22/2019

Just finished another great program with Mass. Law Enforcement Armorers and Instructors!

10/17/2019

Due to unforeseen circumstances, Springfield Armory NHS museum is closed today.

Pocumtuc. Nipmuc. Mattabesic. Pequot. Mohegan. These are just a few of the Native tribes that made their homes along the...
10/14/2019

Pocumtuc. Nipmuc. Mattabesic. Pequot. Mohegan.

These are just a few of the Native tribes that made their homes along the Connecticut River which the Mohegan Tribe named 'Quinetucket'. This same river, such a large part of our lives as well, is one of the reasons Springfield is what it is today. And on this day that we remember Columbus we remember and recognize indigenous peoples and how their lives changed.

#IndigenousPeoplesDay #SPAR #FindYourPark #EncuentraTuParque

Call for Presentations – Shays’ Rebellion: Perspectives on HistoryJanuary 25, 2020Springfield Armory National Historic S...
10/10/2019
Shays Rebellion – Friends of Springfield Armory National Historic Site

Call for Presentations – Shays’ Rebellion: Perspectives on History
January 25, 2020
Springfield Armory National Historic Site
Springfield Technical Community College
Friends of Springfield Armory NHS

Springfield Armory National Historic Site, Springfield Technical Community College, and the Friends of Springfield Armory NHS are organizing a one-day public symposium on Shays’ Rebellion, its history, meaning, and impact.

We invite scholars, historians, archaeologists, archivists, curators, and other interested parties to submit abstracts for short presentations that address the genesis and impact of these critical events, as well as our changing understanding and memorialization of them.

Presentations will be 30 minutes with 10 minutes for questions. Up to eight proposals will be selected to present to the public on January 25, 2020.

Please provide an abstract of no more than 500 words to [email protected]. Abstracts need to include the presenter’s full name and contact information (name, title, organization, address, phone, email), and a 100 word biography.

Important Dates:
Proposals/Abstracts Due: October 25, 2020
Accepted Presentations Notified: November 1, 2019
Presentations Due: January 13, 2019
Symposium Date: January 25, 2020

Submit abstract and biography to: [email protected]

Symposium Information: http://www.friendsofthearmory.org/ShaysRebellion

Daniel Shays and Job Shattuck January 25, 2020 Springfield Armory National Historic Site Springfield Technical Community College Friends of the Springfield Armory National Historic Site Springfield Armory National Historic Site, Springfield Technical Community College, and the Friends of Springfield...

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1 Armory Sq
Springfield, MA
01105-1299

Telephone

(413) 734-8551

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