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Bronze bell from World War II moved to Chilton County

Once official approval was received, Singleton enlisted the assistance of Chilton County Engineer Tony Wearren to assist in the retrieval of the bell. Leaving Clanton late on a Thursday afternoon, Singleton and Wearren drove 15 hours and arrived in the Staten Island community of Stapleton at noon the following day.

According to local news coverage of the event, It took four strong men to lift the 320-pound bronze bell once used on the USS Chilton onto the back of an Alabama-bound silver pickup that was parked on Canal Street in Stapleton early Friday afternoon, an occasion that linked New York’s Richmond County with Chilton County in Alabama.

After loading and securing the precious cargo, Singleton and Wearren began their long trek home. The 2,000-mile round trip crossed nine states and required 30 hours of driving time, all of which was completed in a 48-hour period.

Although the Commissioning Bell had never been to Alabama, Singleton and Wearren feel that it has finally come home to Chilton County. The next step will be to have the bell cleaned and polished by a professional restoration firm. It will then be placed in protective storage until arrangements can be made to present it to the citizens of Chilton County. Plans include displaying this historic artifact in a manner appropriate to memorialize the many sacrifices of our military veterans. The Chilton County Republican Party will be coordinating with local veterans groups to present the bell to the county during the 2016 Memorial Day observance.