Jump to the intro and notes.

Clickable map

Notes and other details via the Historic Albany catalog. Addresses for the buildings have been auto-geocoded, so there are bound to be some errors. (And, yep, the dates in the legend shouldn't have commas.)

Timelapse map

HAF albany building inventory map timelapse gif

Heat map

HAF building inventory map heat

Just sort of a groovy way of showing the "hot" spots for old buildings. (Generated using Google Fusion Tables -- there are a few buildings not represented.)

Albany's oldest buildings

The Van Ostrande-Radliff House is the oldest (still mostly there) building in the city.

Albany is an old place -- roughly 400 years old, depending on how you're counting. So it's going to have some old buildings. But how many? And which buildings? And how old?

There weren't good, comprehensive answers available to those questions until this week. On Tuesday the Historic Albany Foundation released the results of a year-long survey cataloging city buildings constructed before 1860.

And there were a lot! HAF, working with historians Don Rittner and Walter Wheeler, found more than 1,000 buildings for the list. And about 15 percent of them hadn't previously been listed on a historic register.

Historic Albany has posted results of the inventory online, and it's asking members of the public to suggest buildings that should be on the list.

Well, you know how we are. So it probably won't surprise you that we pulled the list for some interactive maps and a few notes...

Top 10 oldest buildings in Albany

HAF building inventory top 10 oldest table

The Van Ostrande-Radliff House -- in downtown Albany near the bus station, #2 on this list -- has been considered the oldest building. And in many respects it still is. The building at the top of the list has only partially survived.

Maps

There are a few maps above in large format -- click or scroll all the way up: including a clickable map with details for each building, a "time-lapse" map, and a "heat" map.

A few things...

HAF building inventory year built graph

+ Most of the buildings in the inventory were built between 1825 and 1875. It's not surprising that were would be more buildings in the (relatively) newer end of the list. But it also might highlight a big population upswing over that time -- Albany went from having 12,630 residents in 1820 to 90,758 in 1890.

+ The buildings are largely clustered in parts of downtown Albany and surrounding neighborhoods. But there are a few scattered farther out. The most western building appears to be a house on McCormack Rd, near the Normanskill.

+ Fun fact about the Van Ostrande-Radliff House -- the 1728 date for it was determined using dendrochronology (the study of tree rings).

+ Curiosity and nerding out aside, Historic Albany says the building inventory will be a tool for preservation, helping to identify buildings that might otherwise get demolished or neglected because no one realized their historical significance.

HAF advertises on AOA.

Comments

Awesome! Can't wait to dig into this.

Right off the bat - what's with the three "buildings" to the immediate west of the Greyhound station? Satellite view shows only parking lots there. Perhaps the historic foundations still survive?

7 Alfred Street was built as the summer home of prominent Albany doctor Thomas Hun. The 40 acres he started clearing in the 1840s was called Buena Vista and included my house at 19 Golder Street which was either a caretakers house or his summer doctor's office. They were both built in the Gothic style and although the porches and windows have been removed from Alfred Street, a gothic shutter remains at the northern gable.

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

What's All Over Albany?

All Over Albany is for interested and interesting people in New York's Capital Region. In other words, it's for you. It's kind of like having a smart, savvy friend who can help you find out what's up. Oh, and our friends call us AOA.

Search

Recently on All Over Albany

The Swinburne Skating Rink is open for the winter

The city of Albany's Swinburne Skating Rink is now open for the winter season. The rink is in Swinburne Park (surprise) and it's covered, so... (more)

Stuff to do this weekend

Thanks for tuning in. Cue the theme music for Stuff to Do This Weekend. Coming up: Holiday music, scantily-clad Santas, Elf with all the popcorn... (more)

Family business

New York State has a prohibition on chain state liquor stores and sales of wine and liquor in supermarkets. As it happens, members of the... (more)

First Day Hikes

One of the best ways to make winter more enjoyable is to actually get outside for some sort of activity. And here's an opportunity to... (more)

Morning Blend

Schenectady fire An early morning house fire on Rugby Road in Schenectady has left five people homeless. [TU][WNYT] Pedestrian in fatal crash identified Police have... (more)

Recent Comments

I just learned about the Woman's Club of Albany yesterday, during the Holiday House tour. It's a really large space that is chock full of character, and they rent it out for parties of the type Maureen is interested in.

Gawking at the @HudsonPark residential conversion in Albany

...has 7 comments, most recently from albanyjune

Family business

...has 1 comment, most recently from ethan

First Day Hikes

...has 1 comment, most recently from bb

A few of the 700some stories about the street names of Albany

...has 6 comments, most recently from Greg

A large, interesting party space in Albany?

...has 5 comments, most recently from Jenna