Fort Ontario found new life between 1903 and 1905 when the United States expanded the post to battalion size as part of the reorganization of the army under Secretary of War Elihu Root. Over two dozen brick and wood frame buildings were constructed outside the old fort to house the larger number of troops and support services. The old fort, however, was abandoned until 1928, when the Enlisted Men’s Barracks was turned into an officers’ dub, and the other large buildings converted to apartments for junior officers. The post continued to grow; by “1941 approximately 125 buildings stood at Fort Ontario. Between 1944 and 1946, Fort Ontario was used as an emergency refugee center, the only one of its kind in the country, for victims of the Nazi Holocaust. In 1946, the fort was transferred to the State of New York Initially used to house veterans and their families during the post-war period, development of the fort as a State Historic Site began in 1949.