Independence in Washington County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
— Baylor University —
The Bell Tower is indicated by a stone platform attached to the wall connecting Houston and Tryon Halls. In 1882, an announcement noted: "Dr. Crane has moved the bell from the place where it has stood so long to a position near Houston Hall so that he will not have to walk so far when he taps the bell for class changes." He moved the bell from a location near the original president's residence in the Octagon Building in the south area of the male campus. President Crane had recently moved into his new home located just north of the campus boundary. The Connective Wall runs east to west for 22 feet and lies 24 inches (2 feet) thick. This is sufficiently thick to support two stories of cut masonry.
Tucked in a northeast corner formed by the east wall of Houston Hall and the Connective Wall is a square Stone Platform. These contiguous flat-lying stones form a platform raised almost a foot above the natural level of the surface. This Stone Platform served as the floor for the bell tower, located at the summit of Windmill Hill. From this location, the bell could be heard all over Independence.
Connective Wall & Adjacent Stone Platform
Example of Bell Tower from the Independence Baptist Church
Baylor University, upon a lofty eminence.
From the University buildings, we have a fine view of all the surrounding country within a circuit of twenty miles.
To the south lies Brenham-we readily discern its streets and buildings - twelve miles distant.
Looking to the southeast, we behold Chappell Hill, twelve miles off. The upper story of Soule University, the Methodist Church and many well known residences may be distinctly seen.
We next direct our gaze to the north, far across hills and valleys, and perceive a distant object looming up to view. It is the A. and M. College, twenty-two miles distant.
One may sit with raptures of delight, for hours, gazing upon lovely farms and farm-houses, which seem like so many covered wagons in the far distance.
How heavenly it seems at eve, when the sun is quietly sinking down in the West, and the gentle South breezes play about us, to be left to our own reflections.
No wonder the students drink in so much inspiration, and what an admirably adapted place for schools of learning-colleges.
It is nothing marvelous, then, that the students so love Independence,
By "Viator" (pseudonym for a Baylor University student)
The Baylors Aegis, May 1883:1
Edited in this manner by the author James S. Belew
Erected by Baylor University.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Education. A significant historical year for this entry is 1882.
Location. 30° 18.974′ N, 96° 20.747′ W. Marker is in Independence, Texas, in Washington County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Farm to Market Road 50 and Hood Hotel Road. The marker is located at the center of Baylor Park on Windmill Hill. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Brenham TX 77833, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Houston Hall (a few steps from this marker); Baylor University for Boys (within shouting distance of this marker); Tryon Hall (within shouting distance of this marker); Baylor's Survival— (within shouting distance of this marker); College Well: of Windmill Hill (within shouting distance of this marker); Baylor University Campus on Windmill Hill: (within shouting distance of this marker); In Recognition of the Land Donations to Baylor (within shouting distance of this marker); Windmill Hill (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Independence.
Also see . . . Baylor University.
Baylor University owes its founding to Robert E. B. Baylor, James Huckins, and William Milton Tryon, who in 1841 organized an education society in the Texas Union Baptist Association with the purpose of establishing a Baptist university in Texas. Baylor was chartered by the Republic of Texas on February 1, 1845, and was opened in 1846 at Independence. Professor Henry F. Gillette directed the school until the arrival of its first president, Henry Lee Graves, who received notice of his election on January 12, 1846, arrived in Independence in December 1846, and entered upon his duties on February 4, 1847. Source: The Handbook of Texas(Submitted on February 10, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas.)
Credits. This page was last revised on February 13, 2021. It was originally submitted on February 9, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. This page has been viewed 152 times since then and 26 times this year. Last updated on February 13, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on February 10, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.