Time Capsule

Let Washburn Ring

Let Washburn Ring

The Washburn Bell now rests safely on a specially built cradle in the lobby of the Washburn Shops, where it can be enjoyed by the WPI community. Cast in 1926 with a senior class gift of $160, the 250-pound bronze bell was silenced once when Washburn's tower collapsed during a 1938 hurricane. It fell a second time in 2005; this time the cupola was deemed structurally unsound to bear its weight, and the bell was not returned to the tower.

The Classes of 2008 and 2009 took on the project of restoring the bell for display and mounting a plaque documenting its history. The Alumni Association helped fund the makeover, which included sandblasting to remove stains and corrosion, and a lacquer coating to preserve its luster. A full account of the restoration, with expense records, drawings, and research, will remain in the Gordon Library Archives.

The bell still tolls—but only for those who shake the clapper.

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