A. Fulton Bell Company, Pittsburgh

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A. Fulton Bell Company, Pittsburgh

Postby admin » Thu Nov 01, 2007 2:35 pm

Sandy in Pennsylvania writes:

Presently doing bell survey for Crawford Co. Historical Society of existing church and school bells in county. Have located bells made by "A.Fulton Co. Pittsburgh" Have been able to find little info about co. Have been able to obtain minimal info from Pittsburgh. Would appreciate any information you might have regarding history of Fulton Bell Co. Thank You


If you can help, please post a response. If you need help posting, please contact me at coordinator@americanbell.org. Please be sure to reference this post as from "Sandy in Pennsylvania" if you are going to send information to me. Thanks

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This inquiry was originally sent to the ABA's Internet Coordinator. Responses are opinions of individuals based on their personal research and knowledge.
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Postby hjlong » Thu Nov 01, 2007 6:44 pm

A. Fulton Company, A. Fulton & Sons, Fulton Bell Foundry, and Chaplin-Fulton Bell Foundry were a succession of Brass & Bronze fuondries that were located in Pittsburgh from the early 1800s to the 1900s. They produced various size bells, steam whistles, marine valves, etc. Andrew Fulton (12/21/1850-2/7/1925) was Mayor of Pittsburgh 1884-1887 and managed the foundry for many years with his brother Thomas C. Fulton. The largest bell that they cast is housed at the Historical Society of Western Pennsylvania and was cast for the Pittsburgh City Hall.
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Postby hjlong » Fri Nov 09, 2007 10:35 pm

I found a 1910 add for the Fulton Bell Foundry in the Catholic Year Book and Directory of Pittsburgh Diocese 1910, p. 72. It reads: "The Fulton Bell Foundry Established 1832. Church, School and Fire Alarm Bells of Genuine Bell Metal. The Chaplin-Fulton Mfg. Co., 28 to 30 Penn Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA". I don't have much data on the succession of ownership, but know that the oldest bells had A. Fulton on them, and around 1860 were labelled A. Fulton & Sons, and around 1900 became Chaplin-Fulton Mfg. Co. Andrew Fulton, Sr. was the founding owner. Their larger bells were characterized by the unique crown mounting to the cast Steel yoke that allowed the bell to rotate in the yoke thus allowing the clapper strike zone to change positions over time. I do not know where the Fulton's learned the trade, but their bells were of particularly high quality and are prized possessions of many bell collectors.
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