Welcome to the ABA! Bell Talk Forums Large Bells Curious about a Bell

Viewing 7 reply threads
  • Author
    • #10623

      Recently bought a “mission”bell and the seller said it had some inscriptions on it, but he knew no more than that, and am curious if anyone can tell me anything about it. The bell is cast iron and about 15”, the weight is 84 pounds. On raised relief on the side are these items: AAND followed by 1734, then a relief of a bell tower with the words Mission and what looks like imn or inn across the base of the bell tower, this is then followed in large letters the words SAN CARLOS.

    • #13173

      Hi vhhare,
      Pictures are worth a thousand words. Old mission bell???, are you sure its cast iron? could the inscription be Ano (a Spanish word meaning YEAR) in 1734 no mission was built in baja or Alta California, all the bells at that time were bronze. Other Spanish mission could have been built during that year but their bells would also be bronze. Cat iron bells are worthless they brake easy, not good sound, and hard to cast, I think you got a sales job, this happens on e-bay all the time 😳 Sorry to give you bad news I have exposed all types of sales pitches, even with some highend auction houses. All I can say is enjoy it.
      if you have any more questions mail erline@covad.net.
      bell history 😆

    • #13174

      Thanks for the reply. About what I figured, probably a bell cast in Mexico for the naive gringo trade. It will be used for display only, to be hung in a bell tower above the entrance to our courtyard. No ringey dingey.

    • #13175

      Posted inquiry before on curious about a bell
      and thought bell in question was a knock- off for the gringo tourist trade but now think it was one of the bells cast for the Mission Inn at Riverside, Ca for decorative use. The bell has the Raincross symbol and Mission Inn on the base of the symbol (logo) and it is cast iron without a clapper meaning, at least to me, that it was meant for display not for use, i.e., it is not bronze as a real bell would be. The other symbols are little puzzling, unless they were just made up by the principal in charge to somehow indicate a mission theme. There is a San Carlos Mission in Carmel, Ca but it was founded in late 1700s and this bell has a date of 1734. Interestingly, the College of San Carlos in Buenos Aires, Argentina was founded in 1734 but don’t know if this is of any import. The symbol above the words AnnD(?)are a puzzle as well as the symbol within the D itself. To all of the “true” bell aficionados this is probably not worth so much but if anyone has a comment would like to hear from you. You can access photos of the bell at http://s185.photobucket.com/albums/x238/vhhare/?

    • #13176
      Neil Goeppinger

      Hi, I went to your site and looked at the photos of the bell. I’ve stayed at the Mission Inn in Riverside, Ca every time I’m in that area – great fun. My wife and I love it.

      The little bell tower on your bell is not identical to the one which is their symble and appears on much of their literature. There is a small museum and gift shop where the tours start and they have a bell there mounted in a bell stand like the one on their stationery and promotional materials, and it is not the same as the one on your bell. Also, the city of Riverside takes great pride in the hotel and has adopted the same “bell stand” motif as the symbol of their city and it appears on the street lights in the downtown area.

      Your bell is nice looking and appears well made. It still could have been made for the Mission Inn in Riverside, or for sale in their gift shop, although I think they would have used their own design.

      One other possiblitiy is that it was made by Mrs. A.S.C. Forbes as she did make some bells in this size. Her bells were iron. She ran the California Bell Company shortly after 1900 and put up over 400 milepost “California Camino Real” bells along the King’s Highway, she make small iron commemorative bells to be sold at the missions up and down California with the names of the missions on them, and she also made large bells as well, but not real big. There have been articles in The Bell Tower on her bells, and That Vanishing Sound by Springer has a few pages on her company. — Neil Goeppinger

    • #13177

      the “ringey dingey” thing, as you call it, is the clapper (or was, as your bell doesn’t have one). Shame.

    • #13178

      I just came across some information that may help.
      Your bell certainly looks like a bell that we made prior to WW2.
      You may want to check the dimensions.
      Mrs. Forbes also made custom bells in which she would add names and logos.
      John Kolstad
      California Bell Co.

    • #13179

      Thanks for your reply. My tardiness in getting back to you was due to the rush of business, not to any lack of interest in finding out more about my bell. In that regards, my bell matches perfectly the dimensions given for the Monterey bell shown in the lower left of the page you sent me from one of Mrs. Forbes’s catalogs. Right down to the design and the size, 14 1/2″ at rim, 10 3/4″ height, 2 3/4″ crown and 85#s. Now, if we could find out who my bell was made for with the inscriptions Anno 1734, the symbol of a bell tower with the words Mission Inn on the base of the tower, and the words San Carlos, that would be super. Perhaps it was made for the Mission Inn in
      Riverside, CA. At least that might be a good lead, for a start. Just as a coincidence of no matter, The San Carlos Mission was first established at Monterey, CA before relocation to its current site in Carmel, and the bell cited in the Catalog is called Monterey and San Carlos are words on my bell. Anyway, such fun. Please help, if you can. . Thanks so much.

Viewing 7 reply threads
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.