Michigan National Guard Armory / 119th Field Artillery
Michigan National Guard Armory
Built in 1924, the Lansing Armory in one of five Michigan National Guard Armories designed by state architect Lynn M. Fry. The front block contained military office; the large hall in the rear had room for unit drills, recreational activities and social gatherings. The drill floor sits on nine inches of sound-proof concrete. To the north a large brick riding hall provided space for horse-drawn artillery drills. Nearby stables housed the horses. Armory buildings also served as public gathering places, hosting boxing matches, circuses, and weddings, among other activities. This Military Gothic style building was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 2010.
119th Field Artillery
The Michigan National Guard traces its history to the territorial volunteer militia. When it became the 119th Field Artillery in 1922, the Lansing unit had horse-drawn 75mm artillery. in 1933, the unit converted to truck-drawn 75mm artillery and, in 1940, to 115mm guns. Lansing based guardsmen have served in every war except the Vietnam conflict. At home, they have maintained peace during social unrest and aided citizens during times of natural disasters such as the 1980 Kalamazoo tornado and the 1976 Seney forest fire. In 2005, when the Michigan National Guard reorganized, the 119th Field Artillery Headquarters moved to Charlotte. The State of Michigan closed the Lansing-Armory in 2007.