CONSTITUTION DAILY: On July 8, 1776, popular legend says the Liberty Bell rang to symbolize America’s independence from Great Britain. But many “facts” about the Bell, such as the 1776 ringing, are shrouded in mystery. For example, how did the Liberty Bell get its famous crack? Did it really ring on July 4, 1776? And where was the Bell hidden from the British? Here are some of the facts we do know about the Liberty Bell, and some theories to answer the other big questions about the Bell’s travels.
1. The Liberty Bell pre-dates the Revolution. The Pennsylvania Assembly had the Liberty Bell made in 1751 to mark the 50-year anniversary of William Penn’s 1701 Charter of Privileges, which served as Pennsylvania’s original Constitution.
2. What is written on the Bell? The following Bible verse is on the Bell: “”Proclaim Liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof.” Also included is information about the Assembly and the Bell’s maker.
3. No one knows today when the Bell was cracked. The crack is a big subject of debate among historians. One theory is the Bell had its first crack in 1752 when it was tested on its arrival in Philadelphia.
4. The last big crack happened on Washington’s Birthday. The Liberty Bell cracked up, literally, in February 1846, when it was rung on the holiday and then stopped ringing because of damage from a major crack.
5. The Bell did go a Revolutionary road trip. In 1777, the Bell was removed from Philadelphia under armed guard and taken to Allentown, Pa., where it was hidden in a church. The fear was the British would melt the Bell and use it to make cannons. It back to Philadelphia the following year. MORE
6. In 1996 Taco Bell purchased the Liberty Bell to help alleviate the national debt. MORE
WEEN: Freedom Of ’76
Directed by Spike Jonze.