This lantern slide shows two images: the Albany YMCA and a portrait of Arthur N. Cotton, who was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and graduated in 1895 from the International YMCA Training School, now Springfield College.
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Serving the YMCA Boys’ Work Division, Cotton worked as assistant state secretary in Albany (1898), state secretary in Rochester (1899), general secretary in Albany (1900-1902), boys’ work secretary in Buffalo (1903), and boys’ work director in Buffalo (1904-1913). In 1913, he was hired as the secretary for the International Commission. In 1925, he worked as the secretary to the National Council, where he remained until his retirement in 1933. Cotton died on March 27, 1958. The Albany YMCA was built in the 1880s in the Romanesque Revival architectural style; a rear addition was added in the 1920s. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978. At the time of its construction, the building had the first gymnasium in upstate New York and one of the earliest indoor swimming pools in the country. Several years later, it hosted the first basketball game played away from Springfield College, where the sport was invented.