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Blackfeet Chief Little Bear with the Liberty Bell 

c. 1915 

via Wikimedia Commons, public domain
God Bless America!🇺🇸

A patriotic illustration from the Sunday Record Herald in 1904 labeled "Liberty Bell”

via New York Public Library Digital Collections, public domain
"The old Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, Phila, Pa., U.S.A.”

c. 1899

via Library of Congress, no known restrictions
The Human Liberty Bell

- 1918

via Wikimedia Commons, public domain
In September of 1777 as the British were closing in on Philadelphia to occupy the city, the Liberty Bell was hidden for nearly a year in the basement of Zion’s Reformed Church in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

Continentals feared that the great American symbol of Liberty would be melted down and used as weapons by the enemy so they transported the over one-ton bell more than 60 miles by horse and wagon to protect it.

Image: Photo of the basement of Zion’s Reformed Church in Allentown, PA with a replica of the Liberty Bell, 1962 via Wikimedia Commons, public domain
The Liberty Bell in Atlanta, Georgia surrounded by school children during the Cotton States & International Exposition in 1895

via Wikimedia Commons, public domain
On July 5th, 1915 the Liberty Bell departed Philadelphia to travel thousands of miles west (by train) to be placed on exhibit at The Panama–Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco.
After it’s return to Philadelphia it would never again leave the City of Brotherly Love.

Image: The Liberty Bell on display in the “Pennsylvania State Building” at the Panama-Pacific international exposition in San Francisco in 1915 via Wikimedia Commons, public domain
Liberty Bell - at Bunker Hill, Boston

- 1903 

via Wikimedia Commons, public domain
On today’s date February 23rd, 1846 The Liberty Bell was rung for the last time.

The over one ton bell was rung on this day in honor of Washington’s Birthday and was never rung again after its fateful fracture became visible.

Image: The Liberty Bell in Philadelphia in 1872 or earlier via Wikimedia Commons, public domain
An early photo of The Liberty Bell and the Interior of Independence Hall in Philadelphia

- before 1872 

via Wikimedia Commons, no known restrictions
"Proclaim Liberty Throughout All the Land Unto All the Inhabitants thereof"

- words inscribed on The Liberty Bell from Leviticus Chapter 25: Verse 10

Image: The Liberty Bell being transferred to a train after being on exhibition in St. Louis, c. 1905 via Wikimedia Commons, public domain
“In the second war for independence, the War of 1812, Stephen Girard, then the richest man in the United States, offered his whole fortune to the United States Government, if necessary, to save the liberties of the country of his adoption. 

Charles Brockden Brown has left a good description of the scene that day, though he takes a poet's liberties with the dates and facts. The old bellman was Andrew McNair, who had rung the Bell during those troubled times for eighteen years. 

This is part of the poem: 


There was a tumult in the city, 
In the quaint old Quaker town, 
And the streets were rife with people 
Pacing restless up and down — 
People gathering at the corners, 
Where they whispered each to each, 
And the sweat stood on their temples 
With the earnestness of speech. 

As the bleak Atlantic currents 
Lash the wild Newfoundland shore, 
So they beat against the State House, 
So they surged against the door, 
And the mingling of their voices 
Made a harmony profound, 
Till the quiet street of Chestnut 
Was all turbulent with sound. 

So they surged against the State House 
While all solemnly inside 
Sat the Continental Congress, 
Truth and reason for their guide. 
O'er a simple scroll debating 
Which, though simple it might be, 
Yet should shake the cliffs of England 
With the thunders of the free. 

Far aloft in that high steeple 
Sat the bellman, old and gray, 
He was weary of the tyrant 
And his iron-sceptered sway. 
So he sat with one hand ready 
On the clapper of the bell 
When his eye should catch the signal 
The long-expected news to tell. 

See! see! the dense crowd quivers 
Through all its lengthy line 
As the boy beside the portal 
Hastens forth to give the sign; 
With his little hands uplifted. 
Breezes dallying with his hair, — 
Hark! with high, clear intonation 
Breaks his young voice on the air. 

Hushed the people's swelling murmur 
Whilst the boy cries joyously — 
"Ring!" he shouts. "Ring, Grandpa, 
Ring, oh, ring for Liberty!" 
Quickly at the given signal 
The old bellman lifts his hand. 
Forth he sends the good news, making 
Iron music through the land. 

How they shouted! What rejoicing! 
How the old Bell shook the air 
Till the clang of Freedom ruffled 
The calmly gliding Delaware! 
How the bonfires and the torches 
Lighted up the night's repose. 
And from the flames, like fabled Phoenix, 
Our glorious Liberty arose! 

That old State House Bell is silent, 
Hushed is now its clamorous tongue, 
But the spirit it awakened 
Still is living — ever young; 
And when we greet the smiling sunlight 
On the Fourth of each July, 
We will ne'er forget the bellman 
Who, betwixt the earth and sky
Rang out loudly "Independence!" 
Which, please God, shall never die!”

From The story of the Liberty Bell by Wayne Whipple, published in 1910
Source says not in copyright 

Image: The Liberty Bell, Philadelphia, Pa. postcard via Wikimedia Commons, public domain in The United States
Liberty Bell at the 1893 Chicago World's Fair
God Bless America!🇺🇸
The Liberty Bell sometime before 1930

On the back this image card reads: 

"This is the bell that once told good news to crowds of people waiting and listening. What good news? That our country should be free, for once it belonged to England. The bell was hanging in the tower of Independence Hall. It was rung to call people together to hear the good news.

lt does not hang in the tower now. It does not ring any more. It has a crack in the side. It is kept in the
lower hall of the building now (currently across from Independence Hall) where it can easily be seen. All American boys and girls like to look at this bell that helped make the first Fourth of July.
Many visit Independence Hall (and today, The Liberty Bell Center) every year to see it. But what about the children who cannot travel to Philadelphia?

Many of them have seen it, too. For the Liberty Bell has been carried on a train to different parts of our land. It has even journeyed way across our country, thousands of miles, to San Francisco. This was done so that people who love our country might see the bell that rang the news of freedom.
Perhaps it will not travel any more, but will stay quietly at home. The crack in the side is getting longer and longer and the traveling jars the bell.”

via NYPL Digital Collections, public domain
President John F. Kennedy with the Liberty Bell at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

via Alamy
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