On Tuesday, July 20th the bell in the Glenville State College clock tower was removed. The iconic bell has rung for many years in Central West Virginia and a group of GSC employees are making plans to preserve it in a new location. Many gathered on the front lawn of the Harry B. Heflin Administration Building to witness the removal of this piece of Glenville State College history.
The GSC Clock Tower Project Committee is made up of a diverse group of faculty, staff, and administration who hope to see the original bell and ‘clockworks’ restored in a new environment. Classified Staff Representative on the Board of Governors and Clock Tower Project Committee member Jason Phares said, “The bell is an indescribably important piece of history to past students, the community, and those of us who hear the bell ringing everyday. Glenville State College is the site of many events for the community, visitors, and alumni, so we hope to make this historic display easily visible and available to everyone who comes on campus.”
A crew from BBL Carlton construction company generously donated the labor and cost of removing the bell and transporting it to storage. BBL Carlton is busy working on Goodwin Hall, the new GSC residence hall. The bell will be displayed near the new residence hall in the future.
The bell, with an estimated weight of 1,000 pounds, has hung in the Administration Building clock tower since 1901 and has long been a symbol of ‘the lighthouse on the hill.’ The ringing of the bell is an hourly tradition that has been taking place for more than one hundred years. For the past few years, the chime has come from speakers controlled by a computer system in the clock tower. The familiar sound to students, faculty, staff, and GSC visitors keeps them on time for classes and appointments.
Glenville State College President Dr. Peter B. Barr hopes the project will “bring the bell to a place that attracts students and community members and recalls the rich history of Glenville State College.”
Vice President for College Advancement and Executive Director of the GSC Foundation Dennis Pounds says a campaign to raise funds for the project is underway on campus. In order to kickstart the fundraising drive, all members of the committee and senior administrative staff were asked to pledge their support. Pounds said, “One hundred percent have stepped up to pledge. We hope to receive more donations from others on campus and elsewhere.”
For more information on the Clock Tower Project or to make a donation, contact Pounds at Dennis.Pounds@glenville.edu or (304) 462-6381.