Alabama National Guard Armory – Fort Joseph L. Byrd Sr.

Sometimes in our daily routine we pass by things of importance and those with interesting historical value right in our own local. As of late I have started paying more attention to the things around me that I come in contact with often. Fort Joseph L. Byrd Sr. is such a place that I pass almost daily on my motorcycle rides to Lakewood Park to do my much needed walking exercise. More on that later, but today I would like to tell you a little about this National Guard Armory located in Florala, AL.

What really made me take notice the other day was seeing some tourist that had stopped there and were taking photos near the big tank. It seems that I personally am paying much more attention to things around me in my motorcycle rides lately. On my way home after walking decided to stop and take a few photos myself.

First let me tell you a little about the tank in the photo as I found that it be interesting. Information based on this link: M-60 Battle Tank Information

“The M-60 Patton Main Battle Tank (MBT) was designed in response to the Soviet T-54, as an improvement and follow-on for the M-48 Patton Tank. The M60 was the first U.S. tank to carry the MBT designation, a heavily armed and armored tank that was also fast and maneuverable.

The M-60 Patton Main Battle Tank was first produced in 1959 and fielded near the end of 1960 by Chrysler Corporation at the Detroit Tank Arsenal. During the 1970s and 1980s, the M-60 was the main assault tank for both the U.S. Army and Marine Corps. Over 15,000 M-60 tanks were delivered over its 23 year production history in the four principal variants M60, M60A1, M60A2, and M60A3 along with a number of other low-production prototypes and experimental models.

The M-60’s crew consisted of the commander, gunner, loader, and driver. It operated at a top speed of 30 mph. Among other innovations, the M60 was the first U.S. tank to be equipped with laser range finders and thermal sights, giving it the capability of being employed at night and under conditions of limited visibility.”

Now that was not enough, wanted to learn more about the armory and how it got it’s name and when etc. Always a curious nut when it comes to history. Found this article by the Florala News, a local newspaper that still exists today, archived on this link: Florala News July 1, 1976

As reported in the Florala News on July 1, 1976 by JoAnn Mann. July 1, 1976 was on Thursday, paper was published weekly so the previous Sunday would be the date of the dedication.

Estimated crowd of 200 people were present Sunday afternoon for the dedication of the Florala National Guard Armory to the memory of Chief Warrant Officer Joseph Leonard Byrd, Sr. Chief Byrd was a long time resident of Florala. He was a member of Company C, 1st Battalion, 131st Armor, Alabama National Guard at Florala for more than 40 years.

What was of further interest in that newspaper link was some news referencing people that I know today, however much older than they were back then. Was rather fun to read about the 24th of June King and Queen courts. 🙂 By the way the 24th of June in Florala, AL is an annual Masonic celebration. Maybe more on that big deal later as it would need a couple of pages to skim over the details. 🙂

Hope you found this interesting? Plan on doing more articles like this in the near future, basically beginning with historical or interesting places locally first and then expanding out further in my motorcycle rides.

Once again, thanks for reading/following, hope you will continue. Remember not an “Old Biker” by definition, just an old man (by birth certificate) that loves to ride motorcycles. Biker is really not the right word for me, “motorcyclists” fits better.

Feel free to leave comments, suggestions and hit that like button. Stay tuned, follow to be notified when next post publishes. And if you feel the urge, share this on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Thanks for reading. 🙂

Keep the shiny side UP!

See more Video clips of my rides on My YouTube channel.

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RAM X-Grip Phone Mount for Motorcycle

Ad Tec Harness Straps Grain Leather Motorcycle Riding Boots

Audew Jump Starter

Black Leather Motorcycle Lever Covers for Motorcycles 16 inch Fringe

Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset

Motorcycle Gloves

Motorcycle Cleaning Products

No endorsement or commission from Revzilla but I’ve purchased several items from them and have been very happy with the quality of products and the expertise of the employees, highly recommend


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