Northbridge Resident Leads Effort to Increase Public Access to Bell
BOSTON – Senator Michael O. Moore (D-Millbury) and Representative David K. Muradian, Jr. (R-Grafton) joined Northbridge resident George Warren to testify in support of legislation that would commission a feasibility study to relocate a replica of an iconic symbol of American independence—the Liberty Bell.
The legislation was jointly filed by Senator Moore and Representative Muradian earlier this year in response to concerns by Mr. Warren about limited access to the replica bell, which is currently situated on the front porch of the State House. Due to post 9/11 security measures, the front grounds of the State House are no longer freely accessible to members of the public.
“Mr. Warren's continued advocacy on this matter is truly an example of how one person can be a catalyst for positive change,” said Senator Moore. “The State House is a living museum and this legislation helps to ensure that the thousands of people who visit the State House each year have the opportunity to access an important piece of history.
“After listening to Mr. Warren’s concerns about accessibility, it became apparent that we needed to work together to relocate the replica Liberty Bell,” said Representative Muradian. “I will continue to push until this dream becomes a reality, whether it’s legislatively or otherwise. Visitors from not only the Commonwealth, but also the United States as a whole, deserve to have the opportunity to view and experience this amazing piece of American history.”
“House Bill 1776 focuses on relocating our Massachusetts Liberty Bell Replica to a better viewing area,” said Mr. Warren. “Right now the bell is in an obscure place, since September 11, 2001. By passing Bill 1776 our bell will not be lost in time and history.”
The history of the replica bell dates back more than a half-century. After World War II, President Truman commissioned a foundry in Annecy, France to cast 55 Liberty Bell replicas that were subsequently delivered to each state and U.S. territory. The bells were used as a means of marketing “Independence Bonds” issued by the government to help replenish the U.S. Treasury after the war.
In addition to gaining support from both legislators, Mr. Warren also obtained approval from several area boards of selectmen in his quest to relocate the Liberty Bell.
The bill, H.1776, is currently under review by the Joint Committee on Tourism, Arts and Cultural Development. To continue tracking the legislation, please click below.