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    • #10692

      Vic in Saint Paul writes:

      I have an old school bell. The bottom is 27 in. across & 22 in high. On the top of it reads the following: N- 55. These words are around the bottom: Iron Amalgam bells By Hedges, Free & Co Cin. It has 2 gongers. Can you send me any info on this bell – the age, where it was made, & the weight? Hope to hear from you. Thanks.

      I did a Google ( search for Hedges, Free & Co., Cincinnati, and was not able to find anything. Can you help?


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

    • #13333

      Hedges, Free & Co [Isaac A Hedges, Watkin Free, Wm H Clark & James B Chadwick], Cincinnati, Ohio was formed in 1857 primarily to produce Sugar Cane Mills. By 1859 they were also producing iron bells,

      Hedges, Free & Co’s Sugar Mills & Sugar Making Apparatus, steam engines, saw mills, reaping machines, Plantation Bells, etc, etc, etc.

      This company was succeeded in 1860 by three of the former principals, Watkin Free & Co, and Wm H Clark. Both manufactured iron bells.

      Watkin Free & Co [Watkin Free & James B Chadwick],

      Wholesale and retail Iron, Steel, nails, Springs, Axels, and smith’s tools, 6 Main St.

      Their business was closed by 1861. I and others on Bell Talk have bells engraved,


      Wm H Clark,

      Cast Steel and Iron Amalgam Bells and Sugar Cane Mills, 122 Main St.

      Wm H Clark sold his interests in 1863 to the Clark Sorgo Machine Co [Wm H Clark, Superintendent; Wm H Blymyer, President; and Horace Norton, Treasurer],

      Manufacture Cane Mills etc, office 122 Main St, foundry W end 9th St.

      When Clark moved from Cincinnati, OH, in 1866, the company became Blymyer, Norton & Co, [Wm H Blymyer, President; Horace Norton, Secretary/Treasurer; Wm H Clark; B D Fearing],

      Manufacturers of Cane Machinery, Bells, Agricultural Machinery, etc, 664 to 694 W 8th St.

      In 1872, this business became Blymyer Manufacturing Co [John K Green, President; Wm H Blymyer, Treasurer],

      Manufacturers of Cane Mills, Evaporators, Bells etc,

      which was sold in 1885 to David W Blymyer and was renamed The Cincinnati Bell Foundry Co,

      The Cincinnati Bell Foundry Co. successors to the Blymyer Manufacturing Co. Manufacturers of Bells for Churches, Schools, Fire Alarms, Court Houses, Factories, Boats, Farms, &c., 664 to 694 West Eighth St., Cincinnati… D.W. Blymyer, President. S.W. Skinner, Treasurer.

      My FREE & CO CIN. O. IRON AMALGAM bell, cast in 1861, looks identical to the Cast Iron Post Bell currently produced by Brosamer’s Bells Inc.

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