The Friends of the New York State Military Museum is a non-partisan, non-profit 501(c)3 educational corporation. It is our mission to memorialize the military heritage of the Empire State, as well as work to expand, preserve, and interpret the collection of military history held at the New York State Military Museum. We do this in numerous ways, such as through events, programs, fundraising, and more.
The Friends was formed in 2002 as a non-profit organization to help support the local New York State Military Museum and Veterans Research Center, located in Saratoga Springs, New York.
The building itself was constructed back in the 1800s, for purposes of containing the Saratoga Springs Armory. In 2001, Governor George Pataki announced the armory would be renovated to house New York State’s military collection. The armory is still located within the building.
The museum houses more than 10,000 artifacts, dating from the American Revolution up through the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The artifacts include uniforms, weapons, artillery pieces, and art. The museum also owns the largest collection of state battle flags in the country and the largest collection of Civil War flags in the world. In addition to The Military Museum, The Veteran Research Center contains a vast library and archive collection for the promotion of military education.
The Friends works to support the maintenance of the museum. This is done through fundraising activities, such as our Night at the Brewseum event and historic USO shows. We also hold informational programs at the museum. Recent programs have included “Soldiers in the Sandbox”, “Raid on Ploesti”, and others. Also at the museum are docents and other volunteers, ready to educate visitors on New York’s military history. When The Friends are not at the Military Museum, we work through schools, other museums, veteran offices, and other locations, to help raise awareness in our local community.
The year 2012 marks the 10th Anniversary for The Friends. As we move into the future, we look forward to continuing our mission of preserving our military heritage and educating others in our community.