The Moving of the Glens Falls Insurance Building
In April 1861 Pres. Abraham Lincoln issued a call for volunteers to defend the Union. Keyes Cool presided over a public meeting, which Austin Holden authorized to raise companies of soldiers. On June 16th they were mustered into the army as Companies E & F of the 22nd Regiment NY Volunteers. Subsequently they became part of the famous Iron Brigade of the First Army Corps.
Both Lodges lost all records in the great fire of 1864 (May 31). For some time after that, both Lodges met at members’ houses. In 1865 121 moved to the 3rd floor of the Glens Falls Bank Building, where they remained until 1874. 456 found a temporary place in the photograph gallery of Crandall & Conkey in the building on the corner of Glen & Exchange Streets. On February 4, 1867, 456 moved to the 3rd floor of the D.H. Cowles & Co. Building on the corner of Ridge & Warren Streets.
On May 18, 1874, 456 moved into the 3rd floor of the new Sherman Building, occupying the same Lodge Rooms with 121. (Glen Street) until May 28. For a short time in 1896 they occupied quarters over the Glens Falls National Bank through the courtesy of Glens Falls Lodge 81 B.P.O.E., whose hall it was. New quarters in the Crandall Block were dedicated on February 11, 1897, occupied by both Lodges. That same year both Lodges formed a Masonic Hall Association to seek a permanent home.
May 15, 1913 saw the dedication of the new Temple. Glens Falls Insurance Company found it necessary to construct a larger building to accommodate its increased business. In the spring of 1912 company officials offered to present their old building to both Lodges, if the Lodges would move the building from its present location. Hiram Krum had originally constructed the building in the 1890’s at a cost exceeding $ 75,000.
The Hall Association accepted the offer and purchased a lot on Glen Street opposite the insurance company property. This new location was at 304 Glen Street approximately 300 feet from the building's original site. The building weighed about 2500 tons and was 65x100 feet. It took about one month to place the building on its new foundation.
John Eichleay Construction Company of Pittsburgh did the work. The estimated cost for moving the building, making interior changes, grading and accessories was around $50,000.
Preparations are made to move the building. The steeple has been removed and rails have been placed under the building. If you look slightly towards the left of the building, an “X” marks the final destination. The building had to be moved across Glen Street and turned 90 degrees so that the front of the building would face the street.
The first step is to turn the building to the correct position. This photo shows the building before crossing Glen Street.
A view up Glen Street with building blocking the street.
A view of the front of the building as it crosses Glen Street.
The Glen Street building reaches its final destination.
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