Tuesday, June 20, 2006
Northampton County's Forgotten Liberty Bell - Symbol of Our Forgotten Liberty
Forged by Bethlehem's Moravians in 1768, Northampton County's Liberty Bell first rang out from the courthouse in Easton's Centre Square. It tolled for court sessions. Its iron tongue also summoned people to fight fires and to announce news. This was the bell that sang out in Easton on July 8, 1776, to announce the signing of the Declaration of Independence. This was the bell that sounded the end of World War II, when thousands of citizens lined the streets to pull at the bell's rope. Its music was heard for 24 hours.
Although the bell is no longer used to announce the opening of court, it's an important part of Lehigh Valley's history. At one time, it was prominently displayed between the District Attorney's Office and two courtrooms. But now, it seems there is no room for this bell in the $44.8 million courthouse expansion.