This bell has been in our family for years, but sometimes truth becomes stories and stories become embelishments.
So the story goes that many years ago, father in law, a retired naval officer- deceased, aquired this bell and said that it came from a libery ship. After MUCH seaching and seeing so many bells, I am just confused now. Ships bell? Railroad bell?
anyway here are the specs…
Mouth of bell is 18″ wide
Height is 14″ to first ridge on top and 16″ to very top of bell (not bolt).
Thought to be off of a “liberty Ship”.
Very heavy 75-100 lbs.
There are NO marks or halmarks. I looked with magnifying glass and nothing.
Are all bells marked? Are there usual places they are marked or hallmarked?
Thanks for all help.
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Hi. Joe Dee.
This is a typical bronze locomotive bell,
which usually hadn’t been marked.
Mark Galperin, Blagovest Bells
Joe: I’ve never seen a locomotive bell with an eye on the clapper for fastening a lanyard. You have a very nice bronze ship bell, WWII vintage.
This certainly looks like a ship bell, but a steel clapper would not have been used on an ocean going ship because it would rapidly corrode. It is also harder than the bell and would damage the bell with repeated usage. Ship bells usually had clappers of Admiralty Bronze or Gun Metal as these would not corrode when exposed to sea air. Admiralty Bronze has more copper than Bell Metal and would not be as harsh on the bell as would a steel or iron clapper. I believe that your bell is a river boat bell or a very poorly made ship bell because of the steel clapper. The clapper also could be a replacement.
Harry Long, MD