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Maryland's National Register Properties

Photo credit: Geoffrey Henry, 03/1985
Elkton Armory
Inventory No.: CE-1035
Date Listed: 9/25/1985
Location: Railroad Street and Bow St., Elkton, Cecil County
Category: Building
Period/Date of Construction: 1915
Related Multiple Property Record: Maryland National Guard Armories
Description: The Elkton Armory is a two-story brick structure with full basement faced with light gray granite. Attached to the rear of this two-story main block is a narrower one-story drill hall. A modern one-story brick garage has been added to the rear of the drill hall. The building’s design imitates a castle, with corner towers flanking two-story curtain walls with irregular window placement. The front (Railroad Avenue) facade is oriented to the south, and has a projecting center gate, flanked by buttresses, with a carved relief of the State Seal above the entry. The towers have irregularly placed windows, all with stone lintels and sills except at the first floor where the windows are set into the stone water table. All of the windows are replacement windows, with decorative muntins applied on the interior so that the windows have the superficial appearance of 4/4 sash. The towers set back slightly at the top of the second floor windows; a band of stone molding marks the change. Crenelations with stone caps crown the towers and walls. The towers have distinct detailing. The east tower has a large supporting buttress and the west has a projecting chimney. The chimney rises from a corbeled base, decorated with four bands surmounting a small human-like mask. The rear one-story drill hall over full basement is six bays long, punctuated by six buttresses with stone trimmed setbacks corresponding to water table, first floor window bases and tops, and capped with stone. First floor windows are four-paned sash under one-pane horizontal strips, one window per bay trimmed with stone sill. The roof over the drill hall is a shallow barrel vault. The rear of the Armory drill hall is brick with three rows of corbeling comprising a decorative arch over two original industrial-style windows. Significance: The Elkton, Maryland Armory is primarily significant for its association with the reorganization and expansion of the National Guard system in the 20th century. It derives additional significance from its role as a social center for the community, a function it has served continuously since its construction date. Architecturally, the building embodies the distinctive characteristics of its type, including a T-shaped plan with a two-story front "head house" section and a one-story perpendicular "drill hall" extending to the rear; its facade is detailed to recall Medieval fortifications, with towers flanking the central entrance, crenellated parapets, and strip buttresses.


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