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National Science Foundation

Image of header, "The Liberty Bell: Protecting an American Icon"
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The History of the Liberty Bell
Forging The Liberty Bell Bell Message Travels of the Bell Liberty Bell Facts

Liberty Bell Facts

  • Liberty bell -- Click to enlargeThe Liberty Bell weighs 2,080 pounds. The yoke weighs about 100 pounds.
  • From lip to crown, the Bell measures three feet. The circumference around the crown measures six feet, 11 inches and the circumference around the lip measures 12 feet.
  • The Liberty Bell is composed of approximately 70 percent copper, 25 percent tin and traces of lead, zinc, arsenic, gold and silver. The Bell is suspended from what is believed to be its original yoke, made of American elm.
  • The cost of the original bell, including insurance and shipping was £150, 13 shillings and eight pence ($225.50) in 1752. The recasting cost slightly more than £36 ($54) in 1753.
  • In 1876, the United States celebrated the Centennial in Philadelphia with a display of replica Liberty Bells from each state. Pennsylvania’s display bell was made out of sugar.
  • On the Liberty Bell, Pennsylvania is misspelled “Pensylvania.” This spelling was one of several acceptable spellings of the name at that time.
  • The strike note of the Bell is E-flat.
  • The federal government gave every state and its territories a replica of the Liberty Bell in the 1950s as part of a national U.S. Savings Bond campaign.
  • The Bell has had three homes: Independence Hall (the Pennsylvania State House) from 1753 to 1976, the Liberty Bell Pavilion from 1976 to 2003 and the new Liberty Bell Center beginning on October 9, 2003.
  • Each year, more than a million people visit the Liberty Bell.
  • Visitor records were broken in 1976, when 3.2 million people visited the Liberty Bell in its new home for the Bicentennial.
  • Forty million people have visited the Bell in the Liberty Bell Pavilion, built for the Bicentennial celebration.
  • The Liberty Bell Center is open year-round (including all major holidays) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and is located on Market Street, between 5th and 6th Streets.

** Photo Credits: Peter West, National Science Foundation

Liberty Bell artifacts -- Click to enlarge Liberty Bell artifacts -- Click to enlarge Brass tabletop ornament --Click to enlarge Handcrafted bell -- Click to enlarge


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