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Glens Falls History

Glens Falls is a City Rich in History!

Glens Falls HistoryGlens Falls NY was the site of many French-Indian and Revolutionary War Battles because of its halfway point between between Fort Edward in Fort Edward NY and Fort William Henry in Lake George NY. Orignally called "Chepontuc", a Mohawk word meaning 'hard place to get around', Glens Falls had a waterfall that blocked the Hudson River. In 1763 Abraham Wing formed a settlement called "Wing's Falls" but later lost the name of the town to Colonel Johannes Glen to settle a debt. Glen changed the name to Glen's Falls, and the apostrophe was eventually dropped.

In 1780, Glens Falls was destroyed in the "Great Burning" of 1780 when a British punitive expedition passed through the area. Glens Falls was rebuilt and came back stronger than ever!

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, many renowned architects designed buildings in Glens Falls. Although three more fires posed serious threats, many unique buildings with storied histories survived and are still in use in the city today.

Glens Falls was incorporated as a city in 1908, separating it it from the Town of Queensbury. It celebrated its centennial in 2008 with many special events in Downtown Glens Falls.

Glens Falls prides itself on being named "Hometown USA," a title given to it by Look Magazine on account of its small-town feel and big city amenities.

1884 glens falls ny fire

Glens Falls' Great Fires

Glens Falls experienced significant fires in 1864, 1884, and 1902.

Learn more about the fires »

Photo: Chapman Museum

 
glens falls city hall

Glens Falls Buildings

Glens Falls is home to many architectural gems that have withstood the test of time.

Learn the history of iconic Glens Falls buildings »

Photo: Jason Checkla

   
civil war monument

Civil War Soldiers Monument

The monument at the intersection of Glen and Bay honors 644 Civil War soldiers from Queensbury.

Learn about the Civil War Soldiers Monument »

 
     
church of the messiah glens falls ny

Three Squares Historic District

A large portion of Glens Falls has architectural and historic significance.

Learn about the Three Squares Historic District »

Photo: Jason Checkla

 
     
red wings logo

Professional Ice Hockey in Glens Falls

The Glens Falls Civic Center has been home to a number of pro hockey teams since 1979.

Learn about Glens Falls' pro teams »

 


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Regional Towns

  • Mapped image of Glens Falls NYGlens Falls
    Discover Hometown USA, Glens Falls NY!
  • View of Queensbury NY on a mapQueensbury
    Visit Queensbury, NY - a bustling town sandwiched between Glens Falls and Lake George!
  • Map image of Fort EdwardFort Edward
    Learn more about the town of Fort Edward in Upstate NY!
  • Image of Lake LuzerneLake Luzerne
    Read more about the quaint area of Hadley - Lake Luzerne!
  • South Glens Falls New YorkSouth Glens Falls
    Learn more about the Village of South Glens Falls - a close knit community located in Upstate NY!

Regional Events

  • NYSPHSAA Basketball Championships
    The New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) comprises over 700 high schools, divided into eleven (11) geographical sections from all over New York State except New York City.
    See full details
  • The 2016 Glens Falls Brewfest
    The Glens Falls Brewfest is a beer and ale tasting event that draws the best of the best local breweries! This year the event will be held on March 19, conveniently located at the Queensbury Hotel!
    See full details
  • The Great Upstate Boat Show In Queensbury NY
    Dreaming of summer fun out on the water? Tubing, fishing, or simply cruising and enjoying your surroundings? Then get prepared for the 2016 boating season and visit the Great Upstate Boat Show!
    See full details
  • The Rotary 5K & Corporate Challenge
    Calling on all runners and walkers! The Glens Falls Rotary annually hosts a 5K road race in April each year. The race is held at the SUNY Adirondack campus on Bay Road in Queensbury, and the course is mostly flat and fast with just one small hill. This year the club has selected the Chapman Historical Museum and the Greater Glens Falls Senior Citizen Center to be the beneficiaries of the event.
    See full details
  • 6th Annual Winter Raptor Fest in Fort Edward, NY
    Experience the wonder of flight as hawks and falcons demonstrate their aerial agility at Friends of the IBA's 6th annual Winter Raptor Fest! Meet and learn about many of the owls, hawks and falcons of the Washington County Grasslands Important Bird Area, including our most endangered species.
    See full details
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