The Arsenal

A rich history. A vibrant future.

For nearly 200 years, the Watervliet Arsenal has been the U.S. Army’s only manufacturer of large caliber cannon. The Arsenal, known as “America’s Cannon Factory,” is the United States’ oldest, continuously active manufacturing facility.  Since the War of 1812, the Watervliet Arsenal has played in integral role in the defense of America and the protection of freedom and democracy. The site is a federally designated National Historic Landmark (NHL).

Today, the 143-acre site is a $1 billion dollar manufacturing complex made up of 72 buildings and 2.2 million square feet of space.  With a workforce of 600 civilians, the Arsenal itself has annual sales of $130 million for large bore cannon, armor plating and a wide variety of other military products.

The site is also home to Benét Laboratories, a Department of the Army Research and Development facility, part of the Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center. Benet is the Army’s principal research and engineering facility for assigned weapon systems. Benet has a staff of 300 scientists, engineers and support personnel at the Arsenal.

There are over 1,350 people working on the Arsenal site.

Historic Resources

The Watervliet Arsenal is a federally designated National Historic Landmark (NHL) and there are a variety of historic buildings around the site. There is also a section of the original Erie Canal wall, which ran through the center of the Arsenal, a testament to site’s important role during America’s Industrial Revolution.