Inventory of Bells


(Reference: 11384)

Description By 1925, Bok had decided to replace the bird sanctuary's water tower with a stone water-and-bell tower.[3] He hired architect Milton B. Medary to design "the most beautiful tower in the world". The 60-bell carillon occupies only the top of the Singing Tower, some of the rest contained large water tanks to irrigate the gardens, with Bok's baronial study at the base. The 15-foot (4.6 m)-wide moat surrounding the tower's base now serves as a koi pond.

The Gothic Revival tower was built at the highest elevation of the site, south of a reflecting pool that reflects its full image. The tower is 51 feet (16 m) square at its base, changing at the height of 150 feet (46 m) to an octagon, with each of the eight sides 37 feet (11 m) wide. It is built of pink Etowah marble and gray Creole marble, mined in Tate, Georgia, and coquina stone from St. Augustine, Florida.

Medary assembled a team of top artisans in their fields—the Art Deco architectural sculpture was designed and executed by Lee Lawrie, and depicts Florida flora and fauna; metalworker Samuel Yellin designed and executed the iron interior staircase, the iron gates to the two bridges over the moat, and the Great Brass Door, which features 30 scenes from the Book of Genesis; J. H. Dulles Allen designed and executed the ceramic mosaics, including the eight 35-foot (11 m)-tall grilles at the top of the tower. Horace H. Burrell & Son, of Philadelphia, was contractor for the tower. Construction began in 1927, and was completed two years later. Outgoing President Calvin Coolidge dedicated the tower on February 1, 1929.

The American Institute of Architects awarded Medary its 1929 Gold Medal for his Mountain Lake Sanctuary and Singing Tower. Medary died six months after the tower's dedication.

Edward W. Bok wrote a short book about the tower's planning and construction titled, America's Taj Mahal (1929). Bok died on January 9, 1930, and was interred before the tower's Great Brass Door.

The first floor was Edward W. Bok's study, and is now called the Founder's Room. The second floor houses the Chao Research Center Archives, a collection of institutional records related to the tower. The third floor contains (now empty) water tanks, and the fourth floor is a work room. The fifth floor houses the Anton Brees Carillon Library, said to be the largest library of carillon music in the world. WIKIPEDIA (09-01-2022)
Bells The tower's 60-bell carillon was cast by Taylor & Company, of Loughborough, England. The bell chamber is on the eighth floor of the tower, and just below it is a playing room that houses the clavier, or keyboard, that controls the bells. The bells are stationary, only the clappers move to sound them. The sixth floor is a studio for the carillon player. Recitals are given daily.
Visits to bell towers The tower's interior is not generally open to the public.
1 Pictures
Editors LLOP i BAYO, Francesc
Updating 09-01-2022

  • LAKE WALES: Bells, bell ringers and bell ringing
  • Francesc LLOP i BAYO; Francesc Xavier MARTÍN NOGUERA Metodologia dels inventaris de campanes (1998)
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