Welcome to the ABA! Bell Talk Forums Large Bells C S Bell Hillsboro Ohio No. 4

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    • #11304
      OldBloom
      Participant

      We are helping restore an 1859 stone schoolhouse. The “current” bell has “C S Bell 4 Hillsboro Ohio” on the yoke. It has the A-frame mounting brackets but we have photos of the school that show a wheel as well. Can anyone provide an approximate age for the bell and whether this is the bell that would have had a wheel?

    • #15047
      lucky13
      Member

      Your bell was cast between 1875 and the early 1880’s from your description of the lettering. It was marketed as a large-size farm bell and utilized a lever pull, not a wheel. Chances are if the building was abandoned at some time, the original bell was sold, given away, stolen, etc. If you will post that school photo I might be able to identify the maker of the original bell if enough of it shows.

    • #15049
      OldBloom
      Participant

      Fascinating. I’ll try and figure out (i.e., read the instructions on this site) how to post a photo or two but not until later this afternoon. The schoolhouse has been in continuous use since it was built — having been added onto with an AIA award-winning addition in 1948. I think one of the then-local farmers (it’s all suburbs now) must have donated the bell after a previous one was stolen. It does say Crystal Metal on the back of the yoke and now I want to see what the A-frame mounts say, if anything.
      Thanks for the information.

    • #15048
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      OldBloom,

      If you would like to have help posting photos, please send photos to me at coordinator@americanbell.org and I will post them for you.

      Carolyn (Admin)

    • #15050
      OldBloom
      Participant

      Sorry not to get back to this. We had an open house event at an 1848 Greek Revival home of one of our members that are up much more planning and prep time than we thought. I’ll send you some photos of both the CS Bell bell and a Meneely bell that just turned up. Our Wing Lake Schoolhouse has had a history of bells turning up missing around Halloween.

    • #15046
      OldBloom
      Participant

      Carolyn, did you get the photos? Will you be able to post them? Did I send you one of the Meneely and Kimberly bell?

    • #15042
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Yes, Michael, I received the pictures. I apologize for the delay in getting them posted. Here they are:

      Michael wrote:

      We are helping restore an 1859 stone schoolhouse. The “current” bell has “C S Bell 4 Hillsboro Ohio” on the yoke. It has the A-frame mounting brackets but we have photos of the school that show a wheel as well. Can anyone provide an approximate age for the bell and whether this is the bell that would have had a wheel?

      The first 2 are of the C S Bell number 4 bell which is in storage while a new belfry is constructed as the old 1859 stone schoolhouse is restored. The third photo is a bell we just learned about that was found in the early 1950s in a barn not far from the schoolhouse. It most closely matches the earliest known photos we have of the building once a belfry had been built – the earliest photo shows the building with no belfry.

      We’re beginning to wonder if the C S Bell bell was perhaps purchased from an antique dealer to replace a missing bell, perhaps in the late 1930s.

      We also have a third bell which supposedly was hanging in the belfry but was removed because it was too heavy and was later remounted in a ceremonial yoke around 1963 to honor a long-serving principal.

      Another local resident says his family has the bill of sale from his grandfather who taught at the school from 1888-89. He supposedly used his first paycheck to buy a bell to replace one that was missing.

      In short, we’re now up to our ears in bells and bell stories and are trying hard to sort things out.

      We even have the New York State Library in Albany checking the records of Meneely and Kimberly to see if there’s any record of a sale in our area.

      Anything you or your members can contribute would be greatly appreciated!

      If you can help, please post a response.
      Admin

      This inquiry was originally sent to the ABA’s Internet Coordinator. Responses are opinions of individuals based on their personal research and knowledge.
      -01209-

    • #15041

      Lucky13 is right about the date period based on the inscription (1875-1882), but I would put this particular bell early in the period based on its design. This is the first such bell I have seen with this style (not only the shape of the bell but the shape of the yoke and the A-frames), so I assume this is C.S.Bell’s first production style. I’ve seen a later C.S.Bell bell which was in essentially the same style as those produced by the company in all later periods, so I deduce that the change in style occurred in the very late 1870s or very early 1880s. Thanks for providing the pictures!

    • #15040
      lucky13
      Member

      The early CS bell is exactly like mine which I posted photos of in this forum a few months ago. Yours is only the third one I’ve seen in 5 decades of bell interest. That Meneely is a beauty and it’s small size, wheel, and that it was stored near the school make it the likely bell in your early photo. You are fortunate to have located it. Being a high end bell (bronze) I doubt it was purchased with the paycheck of a country school teacher. They were paid very little and usually received room and board from a local family as part of their compensation. Good luck with your project.

    • #15039
      OldBloom
      Participant

      Thanks to both of you for the fascinating information. The Meneely bell is scheduled to be installed in a “new” belfry (per early photos) as the Schoolhouse is restored over the next few months.

      Meanwhile, another bell has surfaced, thanks to articles we’ve had published in our local paper. This one is a Fredricktown Ohio bell that’s labeled “F”. The yoke had a portion broken off in a recent storm. Any thoughts about it?

    • #15043
      hjlong3
      Participant

      If you have both pieces of the yoke, you may be able to have it welded or braized and retain function.
      HJLong, MD

    • #15044
      OldBloom
      Participant

      Unfortunately I think the part of the yoke may be in a landfill as we weren’t notified by the current owner until a couple of weeks after the storm damage.
      I’m wondering about the bell itself — the yoke says “E” and “F” and the bell says “F”. I understand from posts elsewhere that the E and F refer to sizes and that the yoke could work with either one. Most of the other references to Frederick Town bells refer to them by number and not by letter. Does a letter designation tell anyone about the age of the bell? Sometime between 1859 when it was built and 1899 a belfry was added to the stone schoolhouse and by 1899 at least one bell had been stolen. We think the Meneely bell we have once was on the school but we’re not sure if it may have been the first one, or perhaps a replacement — thus our interest in determining the age of this one.

      Thanks to everyone for helping us in our search for information on what is now turning out to be several bells.

    • #15045
      lucky13
      Member

      Type “Fredericktown” in the search (upper right of this page).

    • #15051
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      UPDATE

      I have done some follow-up to Michael’s (OldBloom) request for further information about the Meneely bell. He writes:

      We’ll be installing the Meneely and Kimberly bell in its new belfry as soon as the ‘new’ slate roof and copper flashing are up. We have the music director of The Kirk In The Hills working with us (his bells are getting a ‘tune-up’ – sorry, I couldn’t resist) and he thinks that the bituminous material being put on his bells would work for ours to help protect the yoke and other parts – but not the bell.

      Is there someone local (Greater Detroit) who would want to come look at our 1870-1880 bell?

      Michael has given me permission to post his name and email address. If you are interested in seeing the bell and, perhaps, offering some advice, guidance or information, please contact him directly. Contacting him should be done as soon as possible.

      He is Michael Carmichael and his email address is michael-carmichael@sbcglobal.net.

      Admin (Carolyn)

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