Mysteries from the Archives (part VII)

Greetings, Everyone!

It’s time for another Mystery from the Archives!  This latest mystery came hidden within a stack of music. The piece is titled “Rondino for carillon” but the composer and/or arranger is not identified. Comparison to several pieces of music with similar titles have yielded no matches.

Click here to view GCNA Mystery #22

If you can help to provide any information about this piece of music, please email me at

Thank you!

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Oh Look, There’s a Bell!

Thank you, everyone for a wonderful 2016 GCNA Congress! And kudos to Ellen Dickinson and the members of the Yale Guild on a job well done!

For those you who were not able to make it to Connecticut, we wanted to share some of the information that was presented about the GCNA Archives and the Anton Brees Carillon Library at Bok Tower Gardens.




In 2013, we received a “Cataloging Hidden Collections” grant from the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR)! Huge shout out to Joy Banks for writing and receiving this grant!!!  Other recipients in our award year included Princeton University , Colombia University, George Eastman House (Kodak), and the Yellowstone Park Foundation.



Processing is the physical sorting and organization of the materials in a consistent and systematic manner. That means that every piece of paper in these file cabinets and boxes has passed through our hands multiple times in order to ensure it is in the proper place.



How to Access the Materials

To access library materials such as books, scores, recordings, etc., please view the ABCL Library Catalog!

To access the finding aids, which detail information in the vertical files, the GCNA archives, and digitized papers, photographs, etc., please view Bok Tower Gardens Digital Collections!

Please call or email with questions and inquiries and don’t forget to continue sending in your materials! Click here for the Guidelines for Submitting Materials.

History is written by what gets left behind!


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Fabulous Find: Centennial Chime

This fabulous find comes from the Centennial Exhibition which was held in Philadelphia in 1876 in honor of our country’s 100th birthday!

You can view it online as part of BTG’s Digital Collections:

This stereograph* is of the Centennial Chime which was on display in the Machinery Hall of the Centennial Exhibition. It is a 13 bell chime and is the first known chime produced by the McShane Foundry of Maryland. It has since been moved and is now located at the Cathedral of the Incarnation in Garden City, NY.

The Free Library of Philadelphia has additional stereographs from the exhibition, including one showing the keyboard used to play the chime.

*A stereograph shows two nearly identical images side-by-side and when viewed through a stereoscope the image looks 3 dimensional.

Have a great day!

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Mystery/Fabulous Find

Greetings, everyone!

I hope that you’re all having a wonderful summer!

First, I wanted to update you that the last mystery that was shared we believe with 99% certainty is a single bell located at St. Mary’s Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Kingston, Ontario. Many thanks to Rick Watson for his help on this mystery! The nice folks at St. Mary’s were grateful to have some information about their bell, as no one has even seen it in recent years due to the dangerous conditions to access it. The bell (which was cast by Petit & Fritsen and weighs approximately 4,700 pounds) is still in use by means of an electronic mechanism that is used to strike the hour, and for special occasions such as the election of a new pope.

Second, I wanted to also share another mystery/fabulous find! (yes – it is both a mystery and a fabulous find!) This one began, as they usually do, with sorting though materials in the course of our CLIR grant funded project. I came across this letter, which makes mention of film footage taken at the Taylor Bell Foundry.

AACF USKA Ka -- Correspondence -- Letter 27 Aug 1948

Figuring that everyone would enjoy seeing the film, I set about trying to track it down. Thanks to the kind help of Caitlin at the University of Michigan’s Bentley Library, she located what she believes is the correct film! And not only that, it’s already been digitized and is available on their website!

Click here for the direct link to the digitized film. And click here for the link to the catalogue record.

And you can also click here, for a photo of the UM bourdon being tuned that is online as part of Bok Tower Gardens’ digital collections! I encourage you all to browse through the collections to enjoy other photos as well – and more will continue to be added in the future!


And last, but not least. I wanted to share the news the LuAnn has accepted another position and is no longer at Bok Tower – but she’s not too far away and I hope to work with her on future projects! However, I’m very excited to that I have been promoted to her position (which is now called Collections Manager).  So I am still available for reference/research inquiries and will still be bothering you with more mysteries, of course :-)

 Thank you!

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Mysteries from the Archives (part VI)

Greetings, everyone!

It’s been a busy week here in the Anton Brees Carillon Library! Restoration work has begun on the tower, I am continuing to process the vertical files, and LuAnn is hard at work on a special digitization project (more on that later :-)).

This latest mystery comes from a set of photos we received, and includes photos of towers, bells, and carillonneurs.  We believe this photo may have been misidentified, and are trying to determine its location. Any help that you could provide would be greatly appreciated!


CAR0008The label on the photo reads “Carillon for the R.C. cathedral Los Angelos (sic) California”.

The inscription on the bell reads:
“Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam
Pope Pius XII Gloriously Reigning
Joseph Anthony O’Sullivan Archbishop of Kingston
J. Andrew O’Neill, Rector of this Cathedral
Gerald Hanley, James P. Sullivan, J.Reid Powell
Arthur Welsh, Joseph J. Brennan: Assistants”

Joseph Anthony O’Sullivan was the Archbishop of Kingston, Ontario, Canada from 1944 to 1966.  Pope Pius XII served as Pope from 1939 to 1958.

If you can help to provide any information about this bell, please email me at

Thank you so much!

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Mysteries (Part V) – Solved

Once again, you guys come through for us to solve another mystery!

#21) Nieuwe Toren, Kampen, Netherlands

GCNA Mystery_021
Thank you to Milford Myhre, Pieter Blonk, Jeffrey Bossin, and Rick Watson for your help identifying this tower!

Thank you so much!

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Mysteries from the Archives (Part V)

Greetings, everyone!

LuAnn and I were hoping you guys could once again lend a hand to solve this Mystery from the Archives!

This image is part of a series of glass negatives from the William Gorham Rice collection (along with images of other European towers).

#21)GCNA Mystery_021

If you can help to provide any information about this tower, please email me at

Thank you so much!

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