Roslyn ANG Station
Roslyn ANG station was once a part of the 230 acre estate of Clarence Mackay, a millionaire contemporary of the Morgans, Vanderbilts, and Witneys. At it's peak, the estate employed 400 people and entertained such royal visitors as the Duke of Windsor (then Prince of Wales). Charles Lindburgh was also honored here upon his return from Europe in 1927. During the 1920's and 30's, the estate was the scene of many fabulous society parties and was one of the famed North Shore areas of activity. This era ended with Mr. Mackay's death in 1938 and the subsequent destruction of the main house by fire a few years later.
The property's first military use came during World War II, when the U.S. Government leased part of the estate as an Air Defense Post of the First Fighter Command. Later, from 1948 until 1959, the site was the home of the 26th Air Division's Air Defense Control Center - which controlled the entire Northeast. During this period it was known as the Roslyn Air Force Station.
Formal title to the site changed hands in 1953, when the U.S. Government paid the sum of $250,000 for the 50 acres we now occupy, which today has a replacement value in the millions of dollars. The station is currently owned by the USAF until the year 2000, when the land will be turned over to the local community as a result of the 1995 Base Realigment and Closure commission (BRAC), and the remaining units will move up to Stewart ANGB, Newburgh, New York. Since 1959 New York State has had a lease on the station for its present use - as a Communications and Electronics Training site for the Air National Guard.
Perhaps the largest and finest non-flying station in the ANG, Roslyn has over 30 buildings, including a Vehicle Maintenance shop, AGE Shop, warehouse, and dining hall. In it's heyday, living space was maintained for as many as 80 people in private and semi-private rooms.
The Air Force planned to close Roslyn Air Guard Station and sell the land for $3 million, contrary to the clear intent of the 1995 Commission that Roslyn Air Guard Station be closed only if the land sale proceeds met the minimum amount necessary to make the closure cost effective, which the Air Force represented to the Commission as being at least $14 million. The Commission report indicates that the Commission intended that the Roslyn Air Guard Station property be sold at a "fair market value" to make the realignment and closure "cost effective." The transcript of the Commission's final deliberations on the closure of Roslyn Air Guard Station identifies that the Commission considered only a "fair market value" of as much as $22.4 million, or at least $14 million by 1999, to make the realignment and closure "cost effective."
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