The Church Bell

The Church Bell

 Our historic bell was first installed as a church bell in October 1876 at the then Congregational Church in Arthur Street, Roma. The Roma Church of Christ purchased the Congregational Church building and bell in August 1896. 

“Western Star” Newspaper 5th January 1907 reads : Big Fire at Roma. Several Buildings Destroyed. The first indication the townspeople had of the fire was the prolonged but not very violent ringing of the Church of Christ bell at about 7 o’clock last evening. On arriving on the scene, it was found that the fire had originated in the general grocery store.” In this fire there were 4 businesses completely demolished and 3 others severely scorched. 

During the Second World War, the bell was moved to the original Church of Christ minister’s residence in William Street to serve as an air raid alarm. Roma and surrounding oil and gas fields were apparently thought to be a likely enemy target. 

The Roma Town Council Meeting Minutes in March 1942 stated : “The Mayor reported that a church bell, the property of the Church of Christ, has been offered for the sounding of alarms during air raids. The offer was accepted. The bell is to be erected at Pastor Boettcher’s residence Corner of William & Queen Streets.” 

In the early 1970’s the bell was removed and stored in the Arthur Street church building. It was sold to a local Parents and Citizens Association to be used as a fire alarm at the school. However it was never used and lay in a workshop for most of the time until it was re-purchased by the Church of Christ in 1980. 

The bell was subsequently moved to the new Church at 119 Currey Street in 1991. It is now one of the Tourist Attractions of Roma with a plaque advising tourists of its history. 

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