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Yuma in Yuma County, Arizona — The American Mountains (Southwest)
 

The Prison Bell

 
 
The Prison Bell Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By James Hulse, November 8, 2021
1. The Prison Bell Marker
Inscription.  

• Cast in 1875
• Stands approximately 3 feet high
• Weighs approximately 800 lbs. with carriage

This bell was cast by W.T. Garratt's Brass and Bell Foundry in San Francisco, California in 1875. A sailing ship brought the bell up the Gulf of California from San Francisco, where it was transferred to a steamboat for its journey up the Colorado River to Yuma.

The bell's original purpose was to sound an alarm of escape. The ringing of the bell could be heard for many miles, alerting the townspeople of Yuma of an escape, riot,... or worse. In later years, it would be adopted to also call the men to and from work.

Once the prison closed, the bell sat silent until 1914 when the bell was purchased by the Somerton Baptist Church. For the next 23 years the bell would sound joy and praise, juxtaposing its original purpose. In 1937, Rev. Lloyd D. Wells felt it was time that the bell be preserved, and ultimately returned to its original location. Fortunately, Arizona State Parks purchased the bell to make it a part of the Prison museum.

Captions
Lower Left: The bell, placed
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on a prison building roofline, sits waiting to ring the alarm.
Middle Right: 1883 W.T. Garratt Brass and Bell Foundry catalog page
 
Erected by Yuma Territorial Prison Park and Arizona State Parks.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Law EnforcementParks & Recreational Areas. A significant historical year for this entry is 1875.
 
Location. 32° 43.615′ N, 114° 36.907′ W. Marker is in Yuma, Arizona, in Yuma County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Prison Hill Road and South Levee Road. The marker is located in the southwestern section of the Yuma Territorial Prison Park. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 220 Prison Hill Road, Yuma AZ 85364, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Yuma Territorial Prison (a few steps from this marker); Main Cellblock (a few steps from this marker); Incorrigible Ward (within shouting distance of this marker); Shops (within shouting distance of this marker); Prison Labor (within shouting distance of this marker); New Yard (within shouting distance of this marker); Drinking Water Life in the Desert (within shouting distance of this marker); Yuma East Wetlands (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Yuma.
 
Also see . . .
The Prison Bell and Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By James Hulse, November 8, 2021
2. The Prison Bell and Marker
 Yuma Territorial Prison.
The Yuma Territorial Prison is a former prison located in Yuma, Arizona, United States. Opened on July 1, 1876, and shut down on September 15, 1909. It is one of the Yuma Crossing and Associated Sites on the National Register of Historic Places in the Yuma Crossing National Heritage Area. The site is now operated as a historical museum by Arizona State Parks as Yuma Territorial Prison State Historic Park. Source: Wikipedia
(Submitted on November 16, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas.) 
 
The reverse view of the Prison Bell and Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By James Hulse, November 8, 2021
3. The reverse view of the Prison Bell and Marker
The view of the Prison Bell in the prison courtyard image. Click for full size.
Photographed By James Hulse, November 8, 2021
4. The view of the Prison Bell in the prison courtyard
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 16, 2021. It was originally submitted on November 16, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. This page has been viewed 459 times since then and 40 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on November 16, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas.

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Apr. 17, 2024