The oldest set of change ringing bells in North America can be found at Old North Church. The eight change ringing bells were cast by Abell Rudhall in Gloucester, England in 1744. They were hung in 1745. In the ringing room today hangs a copy of a 1750 charter in which the guild agreed upon a democratic organization of the tower. Interestingly, Paul Revere is the second signature on that contract.
The bells were restored in 1894, and then were mostly idle. They were restored (again) in 1975 with the help of Geoffrey Davies, of Simon W. Robinson Lodge in Lexington, for the Boston Bicentennial celebration. They have been rung regularly ever since.
Please click here for a demonstration of the bell ringers in action!
The 8 Bells of the Old North
Sound:(Treble) F Weight: 5 cwt, 2 qr, 4 lbs Inscription: Abel Rudhall of Gloucester, cast us all, Anno 1744.
Sound: (Treble) E Weight: 5 cwt, 2 qr, 6 lbs Inscription: Since generosity has opened our mouths, our tongues shall ring aloud its praise. 1744.
Sound: (Treble) D Weight: 6 cwt, 1 qr, 3 lbs Inscription:The subscription for these bells was begun by John Hannmock and Robert Temple, Church Wardens, Anno 1743; completed by Robert Jenkins and John Gould, church Wardens, Anno 1744.
Sound: (Treble) C Weight: 7 cwt, 1 qr, 3 lbs Inscription:William Shirley, Esq., Governor of the Massachusetts Bay, in New England. Anno 1744.
Sound: 7 cwt, 1 qr, 21 lbs Weight: (Treble) B flat Inscription: God preserve the Church of England. 1744.
Sound: (Treble) A Weight: 8 cwt, 1 qr, 24 lbs Inscription:We are the first ring of bells cast for the British Empire in North America. A.R. 1744.
Sound:(Treble) D Weight:10 cwt, 2 qr, 24 lbs Inscription:This Church was founded in the year 1723. Timothy Cutler, DD, the first Rector, A.R. 1744
Sound:(Tenor) F Weight: 13 cwt, 3 qr, 5 lbs Inscription: This peal of eight bells is the gift of a number of generous persons to Christ Church, in Boston, N.E. Anno 1744. A.R