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Cast Bronze Bells 2018-06-08T08:11:03+00:00

The beautiful, rich tones of cast bronze bells

All over the world, Verdin cast bronze bells call parishioners and congregations to prayer; chime in reverence; ring joyously to mark new beginnings; toll in remembrance; and provide Westminster chimes and time strikes across college campuses and communities. Verdin creates swinging or stationary bells, new cast bronze bells, cast bell carillons, historic pre-owned bells/used bells, electronic digital carillons, and bell towers.

“WHEN PEOPLE HEAR BELLS RINGING, THEIR HEARTS ARE LIFTED IN A WAY THAT REMAINS WITH THEM FOR LIFE.”

LAWRENCE FRANK, FORT WAYNE, IN

The history of cast bronze bells

BELLS HAVE BEEN CAST IN AMERICA SINCE THE 18TH CENTURY.

Bells have played a major role in our lives for several centuries, long before Christian churches made bells an important part of their ceremony. The ancient Egyptians used bells in the worship of their god Osiris. Moses introduced bells into the ceremony of the Jewish religion, and Roman countrymen fastened bells to their chariots to express gratitude to the gods for success in battle.

In medieval times, the ringing of bells was believed to chase evil spirits from doorsteps, to quiet storms at sea, and to protect a person’s soul at death. It was during this time that the custom of affixing symbols and inscriptions on bells was born.

Bells were also used as early timekeepers, telling villagers when to eat and sleep as well as alerting to dangers such as enemy invasion. Bells tolled for someone near death to remind the community to pray for the sick, and upon death bells tolled the age of the deceased.

It was said that villagers never forgot the sound of their village bell, no matter how many years they were away from home.

During WWII, bells were melted down and made into weapons. After the war ended, many became bells again and were used to announce the celebrations that followed.

Although bells no longer order our lives as in years past, they continue to inspire and announce the time in communities and churches around the world. The tradition of ringing bells lives on.

Verdin offers swinging or stationary bells, new cast bronze bells, cast bell carillons, historic pre-owned bells/used bells, electronic digital carillons, and bell towers.

McNeely Bell Company, Troy, New York

Meneely Bells

The first Meneely bell foundry was established in 1826 in West Troy (now Watervliet), New York, by Andrew Meneely. The bells were well known for their “beauty of tone.” The Meneely Bell Foundry supplied the replacement bell for Philadelphia’s Independence Hall, which originally held the Liberty Bell. Two of Andrew’s sons continued to operate the foundry after his death, and it remained a family operation until its closure in 1952.

West Troy Bell

Meneely (West Troy) Bells

Meneely-West Troy was an established by a third son, Clinton H. Meneely, across the river in Troy, New York and began casting bells in 1868. Initially under the name Meneely & Kimberly; the foundry reorganized in 1879 as the Clinton H. Meneely Bell Company, and then later as the Meneely Bell Company. It remained a family operation until its closure in 1952. Together, they produced about 65,000 bells before they both closed in 1952.

The E.W. Vanduzen Co. Bell

Vanduzen Bells

From 1837 to 1955, this Cincinnati, Ohio foundry cast bells under several names including: G. W. Coffin & Company, Tift, and Buckeye Bell Foundry. They provided bells for various chimes throughout the United States and many still hang in churches across the midwest. The foundry closed in 1955.

Stuckstede Bell, St. Louis, Missouri

Stuckstede Bells

The Stuckstede Bell Foundry of St. Louis, MO cast bells from 1855 to 1962. This was the only bell company West of the Mississippi. There were other bell companies out of St. Louis that came and went through that time period, but the Stuckstede Bell Foundry was the only bell company to be able to successfully cast and sell bells throughout the United States. Many bells that went to the American West were cast by Stuckstede. The foundry closed in 1962.

LEARN MORE BELL HISTORY

Verdin buys, sells, and installs historic, preowned bells

Contact us for pricing on historic preowned/used cast bronze bells, including: Stuckstede, Paccard, Meneely, Petit & Fritsen, Vanduzen, Taylor, Whitechapel, Gillett & Johnston, and McShane Bells.

The warm, rich tones of Verdin bells

Verdin designs, casts, and installs bronze bells that produce the world’s finest tones. We build swinging or stationary bells, new cast bronze bells, cast bell carillons, and bell towers. In addition, we offer repair and restoration of existing cast bells and bell ringing equipment.

Verdin American Bells

Verdin’s American profile bells echo the profile, tone, and clarity of early American bells based on proprietary designs. The designs produce a more perfect vibration resulting in the richest, most musical tone and the largest sound. Every Verdin cast bronze bell is handcrafted using 21st Century technology combined with 19th Century musical tonality. The result: bells with unequaled musical tones.

Attention to detail and craftsmanship have established Verdin bells as America’s finest.

Ringing cast bronze bells

SINGLE CAST BELL

The most prevalent use of a single bell is to call people to worship, toll for funerals, sound the Angelus, and strike the time of day. The size of the bell determines the pitch or tone: the larger the bell the richer the tonal quality. Bells are typically installed within a bell tower or steeple and can be operated by rope or electronically using clock-controlled electric bell ringing equipment.

PEAL OF BELLS

A peal is comprised of two to eight bells and is a popular arrangement for playing music in churches, colleges, and town squares as the joyous sound of multiple bells ringing denotes a festive occasion. Peals are often rung as a call to worship, to mark the time of day, and to celebrate weddings. The melodious pealing sound is created by an ever-changing pattern as bells ring together or singularly at pendulum rates. The most popular peal is the three-bell peal which sounds the first, third, and fifth notes of a major chord.

CAST BELL CHIMES

Consisting of nine to 22 bells, chimes are usually arranged in a diatonic scale, which is similar to the arrangement of black and white piano keys. As a result, tunes and melodies can be played in more than one key, creating beautiful melodies that immediately enhance any community, church, university, and commercial venue.
The most popular range for cast bell chimes is 14 bells, which allows most hymns and melodies such as “Silent Night” and “The Star Spangled Banner” to be played without alteration.

BELL CARILLONS

Carillons offer listeners a diverse musical range comprised of at least two octaves of tuned bells, which allows for full musical expression. Each custom cast bell carillon consists of 23 or more bells played from a keyboard console linked directly to bell clappers. Verdin bell carillons with traditional wooden keyboards are featured at Brigham Young University; the University of Texas; the Thomas Reese Memorial Carillon in Springfield, IL; the National Zoological Park in Washington, DC, and many other prominent locations across America.

“A PEAL IS MY FAVORITE BELL RING. ALL BELLS SWING AND RING AT THEIR OWN NATURAL RATE, GIVING THE PEAL THAT UNIQUE RANDOMNESS AND BEAUTY NOT FOUND IN ANY OTHER BELL RING.”

BOB VERDIN, III, 6TH GENERATION VERDIN, BELL PRODUCT MANAGER

HOW A BELL IS MADE

WATCH A BELL CASTING

Every Verdin bell is handcrafted and cast in bronze, a mixture of 80% copper and 20% tin. Verdin will cast any size bell, from six pounds up to the famous World Peace Bell weighing 66,000 pounds.

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