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First School Bell in Cedar Falls


Cedar Falls
Cedar Falls Historical
Society Museum,
308 West 3rd Street

The first public school district in Black Hawk County was formed in Cedar Falls in 1853. A 16 x 20-foot schoolhouse was built on a site at Fifth and Main Streets. In 1854, a bell was purchased for the school with the proceeds of a dinner given by the ladies of the community. The Meneeley Foundry Company of New York, the same foundry that produced the original belle for the UNI Campanile carillon, cast the bell.

The original schoolhouse was used until 1863, when Jefferson School and the first Lincoln School replaced it. The bell was used at Jefferson School and later at the first Humbert School in 1960. When the new Humbert School was built, the bell was kept there for a time. It has since been donated to the Cedar Falls Historical Society.

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Last updated Wednesday, June 23, 2004

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