Welcome to the ABA! Bell Talk Forums Small Bells Robert Wells Crotal bell – likely use? Re: Re: Robert Wells Crotal bell – likely use?


Hi Peter!
It would be nice to get a few different shots of the mounting part, but I’d like to put my two cents in if I may.

1. How long ago did the ship go down? I suspect quite some time ago. That brings up a couple points then: a) in the ocean there are all sorts of organisms that will rapidly colonize / encrust surfaces in the sea. I don’t see any on this bell. and b) Salt water (any water really, but essentially salt) will corrode iron very quickly. The mounting bracket does not look corroded enough to have been immersed for an overly long period of time to me. I find it doubtful that it came from the ship in question unless it is relatively recent and/or has a portion above the waterline.

2. From what I can see of the mounting bracket, it appears to have been riveted to something. Is where you found it a relatively smooth area that would permit a horse drawn carriage? I can see it being knocked off one of those along a stony beach. Perhaps a horse drawn boat carriage to haul the boat in and take it to storage. The bell would act to alert people while in transit.

3. While I haven’t heard of these bells being used for ‘ocean’ purposes, I can’t see why they wouldn’t be. For example on a Buoy as a backup marker or on a float for a crab pot. Since you sound like you are near the area, it would probably be fairly easy to simply stop by a fisherman’s supply shop and ask. You might even see some new ones for sale there!

Just some ideas for you, from a land locked ‘lubber’.