Infamous Lawrence High bell holds historical value

By Anne Woolverton, Reporter

Lawrence High was established almost 200 years ago, so it is no surprise that it comes with a trove of historic artifacts.

The foremost being the bell by the auditorium. Although the instrument may look normal to uneducated passerby, it is holds very interesting LHS history.

The bell was originally manufactured in Boston, Massachusetts in 1856 and began its first attempt to travel to the Kansas area. The bell was originally sent to New Orleans to be shipped through the Missouri and Mississippi rivers to get to Kansas City, but the ship with the bell onboard was wrecked. The bell was left stranded in the gulf of Mexico. 

Approximately two years later it was recovered from the gulf. The bell dates back to the Civil War, when it was snuck into Lawrence. The bell was hidden in a load of hay, to prevent being confiscated in the midst of the Missouri-Kansas conflict.

Even though the bell is such a prominent part of Lawrence High’s history, many students do not know of its existence. When asked, many students did not even know about the bell hanging outside of the auditorium. 

On the other hand, some students are informed on the adventures of the bell. Junior Lauren Seybold considers the bell one of Lawrence High’s many examples of student dedication. 

“I think there’s also a lot of people that are proud to be LHS graduates,” Seybold said. “They put a lot back into the school, especially with the redesign.” 

Students aren’t the only ones who are grateful for the background of our school. Mr. Hood takes his classes to visit the bell at the beginning of each year and explains its story. 

“Because we have been around for so long, this town has so much history,” Hood said. “The high school is bound to be a part of that.”