About 2018-06-12T14:38:02+00:00

The Verdin story

CELEBRATING 175 YEARS!

The Verdin Company’s legacy, experience, and passion to innovate have been passed down over six generations. After 175 years, we still use craftsmanship honed over the decades to produce the highest-quality bells, clocks, and towers in the world.

The early days

When two French immigrant brothers, Francis de Sales and Michael Verdin, came to the Cincinnati, Ohio area from Alsace, France in 1835, they were determined to use their iron forging skills to build clocks in America. The two brothers immediately established a tower clock business in the famous Over-the-Rhine neighborhood in Cincinnati, where their first documented installation was a clock and bell equipment at Old St. Mary’s Church in 1842.

A milestone few companies reach

Six generations and 175 years later, The Verdin Company has grown from that modest beginning to become the industry leader in bells, bell equipment, restoration, digital carillons, and clocks. One of the nation’s oldest family-owned manufacturers, Verdin is known for innovation – including the electric clock winder in 1910, the first electric bell ringer in 1927, the largest swinging cast bell in America, and the only traveling bell foundry in the world. With a national sales force, a dedicated team of service professionals, and international recognition for craftsmanship, Verdin has over 55,000 installations in churches, universities, municipalities, and businesses across the country.

A six-generation family business

After working side-by-side with their fathers for so many years, the 5th generation has inspired and passed their own bell and clock knowledge to their sons, Robert III, Tim, and Tom. Quality products and solid customer relationships are Verdin’s most important goals. After 175 years, The Verdin Company continues to have an impact on the industry as a pioneer and innovator.

Our values

  • Customer-focused

  • Credible, trusted partner

  • Attention to detail

  • Passion and innovation

  • Quality craftsmanship

  • Long-term relationships

James R. Verdin, president, The Verdin Company

“This is a very exciting year for The Verdin Company as we reflect on our extensive history and product innovations, and remember the pioneers who came before us and laid the foundation for our company.”

– JAMES R. VERDIN, PRESIDENT, THE VERDIN COMPANY
Verdin 175th Anniversary logo

SIX

GENERATIONS

175

YEARS

55,000

INSTALLATIONS

Verdin 175th Anniversary Bell

CINCINNATI, OH

Enjoy the video to learn more about the Verdin 175th anniversary bell created to mark a special milestone in the history of The Verdin Company.

The Verdin timeline

Innovation is the hallmark of Verdin. Since the first installation in 1842, Verdin has pioneered multiple breakthroughs in the bell and clock industry, and acquired several bell foundries and related businesses.

1835

Two French immigrant brothers, Francis de Sales and Michael Verdin, immigrated to the Cincinnati, Ohio area from Alsace, France in 1835, and established the Verdin & Brother company, a tower clock business on Vine and 12th Street.

Francis de Sales Verdin, First Generation The Verdin Company

1842

First installation: Tower clock

Old Saint Marys Catholic Church, Cincinnati, Ohio

Verdin & Brother built the clock and bell equipment for Old St. Mary’s, Cincinnati, Ohio. Today, the original face and mechanism are still in place, although the weights and pendulum were removed when the clock was electrified by Verdin 100 years after its installation. Old St. Mary’s is the oldest clock tower in Cincinnati, and one of the oldest in the United States.

1910

Invents continuous mechanical winder

Alois Nicolas Verdin, second generation, invents the continuous mechanical winder for tower clocks. He was recognized as one of the region’s most distinguished inventors in the field of time-keeping.

1927

Creates America’s first electric bell ringer

Verdin Electric Bell Ringer, 1927

As electricity became more widely available, Innes Theopholis (I.T.) Verdin, third generation, invented America’s first electric bell ringer. Prior to his invention, bells were rung by hand by pulling a rope.

1936

4th generation

In 1934, leadership of the company passed from I.T. Verdin to his sons Robert Verdin, Sr., Ralph Verdin, and Forrest Verdin. Together, they modernized the company’s products and continued the trend set by I.T. Verdin of introducing electrification to many installations that were manually operated.

1950

Introduces electronic bell carillons

These new carillons amplify bell sounds through speakers.

Old I.T. Verdin Carillon

1955

Acquires Vanduzen Bell Foundry

1971

5th generation

Fifth generation, James Verdin, Robert Verdin, Jr. and David Verdin take over business.  Create national sales force selling tower and street clocks, cast bronze bells, bell ringing equipment and electronic carillons.

1975

Acquires Deagan Tubular Chime Company

1997

Purchases VanBergen Bell Foundry

Harmannus (Harry) H. VanBergen grew up in the bell business and represents the ninth generation of the vanBergen family. VanBergen was founded and cast their first bells in 1795. Harry studied casting, tuning, and playing in Europe, and his bell expertise has been developed and honed over a lifetime. He currently works for The Verdin Company.

vanBergen Bell Company Logo

1999

Creates the world’s largest swinging bell

Verdin designed and manufactured the world’s largest swinging bell—the 66,600-pound World Peace Bell—to commemorate the Millennium.

World Peace Bell, Newport, Kentucky

2001

Creates world’s only Bell Foundry on Wheels

Verdin Bell Foundry On Wheels Bell Casting, Las Vegas, NV

To celebrate the Ohio Bicentennial, Verdin created the world’s first traveling bell foundry. The Bell Foundry on Wheels was designed to more easily cast bells on site in each Ohio county.

2002

Purchases Stoermer Bell Foundry

The Stoermer Bell Foundry was established in Canada in 1931 when Carl Stoermer emigrated to Kitchener, Ontario.

2006

Purchases Belltron U.S.A.

2010

Purchases Canterbury International

Founded by Larry Snyder, Canterbury has been designing and crafting commercial site furnishings since 1962.

2014

Acquires Schulmerich Carillons

Schulmerich Carillons Logo

George J. Schulmerich pioneered the field of electro-mechanical bells and carillons in 1932 with the first digital bell music. He discovered that tiny rods of cast bronze struck with miniature hammers produced audible and pure bell tones that could be amplified electronically to produce a rich, sonorous tone.

2015

Introduces Verdin organ and piano line

Verdin’s organ product line enhances organ music by adding bell voices to existing organs.

Verdin Organ Division logo

2017

Verdin 175th Anniversary logo

In 2017, Verdin celebrates its 175th anniversary as a family business. Verdin has over 55,000 installations worldwide and is the oldest privately-held manufacturing business in Ohio.

Today Verdin is led by the fifth and sixth generations of Verdins – James Verdin, Bob Verdin III, and Tim Verdin.  Like their family members before them, today’s fifth and sixth generations lead the company forward by blending technological innovation with old-world craftsmanship.  They lead the company with creative ideas, new clock and bell products, and unparalleled customer service.

The Verdin family and the Bell Foundry on Wheels crew with the Florida Governor (2014)