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Ogdensburg Station

127 North Water Street
Ogdensburg, NY 13669
Phone: (315) 393-1150
Fax: (315) 393-9204

History and Area of Responsibility
The Ogdensburg Border Patrol Station was established in 1931. Originally, this station was part of the former Ogdensburg Sector.

The Ogdensburg Station was located in the basement of the Robert C. McEwen U.S. Customs building in Ogdensburg from 1937 until June 1989, when the station offices were moved into larger quarters on the second floor of the same building. On July 1, 1982, the Ogdensburg Sector was dissolved and the Ogdensburg station, along with the Massena and Malone stations, was absorbed into the Swanton Sector. The McEwen Customs House was constructed in 1809 and is the oldest building in Federal Service.

In 1931, the main enforcement problem of the Ogdensburg station was with liquor smuggling across the St. Lawrence River during Prohibition. During World War II, the prevention of illegal entry by prisoners of war and subversive aliens from Canada was also a major concern. For example, a Nazi U-boat sailor was apprehended by Ogdensburg officers on a Lisbon, N.Y., farm during World War II. This incident later inspired a movie. During the 1950's, Canada received thousands of displaced persons and refugees from Europe, many of who were excludable from the United States. This created a potential pool of illegal entrants, and several smuggling cases involving these aliens were made in the Ogdensburg area.

Construction of the St. Lawrence Seaway from 1955 to 1959 called for additional man-hours to be spent on linewatch to control the "Free Zone" established during this period. This "Free Zone" extended along the St. Lawrence River on the U.S. shore from Massena to Ogdensburg.

The station area of responsibility has fluctuated over the years. The Morristown Station, opened in 1931, controlled the border from the St. Lawrence County line near Redwood, NY, to the Country Club about six miles west of Ogdensburg. The Morristown station was closed in 1949, and its station area was assigned to the Ogdensburg Station. In 1964, Hamilton County and that part of Herkimer County lying north of New York State #8, was added to the Ogdensburg station area. This additional area is worked by periodic details.

The station area of responsibility currently has 48 miles of border along the St. Lawrence River, from Waddington, New York to the St. Lawrence and Jefferson County Lines.


Last Modified: Oct 13, 2016