Bell Tower

The world’s only operating Schwalbach Mechanical Clock that rings an Angelus Bell is found in the bell tower of the Church of Saint Joseph.  This historical clock is still in its original operating condition.

The clock was built in 1906 by Mathias Schwalbach, a master builder of tower clocks from the Rhine Country.  Although six clocks with Angelus bells were made, the clock in the bell tower at the Church of Saint Joseph is the only one still functioning as originally designed.

According to the original catalog citation, the clock shows the time on four faces that are each five feet tall.  The quarter hours are struck on two bells and the hours are struck on a bell weighing 3500 pounds.  The Angelus bell rings three times each day — at 6:00 am, 12:00 noon and 6:00 pm.

In 2006, the clock stopped working.  A photo taken before restoration clearly shows that temperature changes, moisture, dust, dirt, and time had taken their toll on the ancient clock.  Because the clock was still in high quality and condition, the decision was made to completely repair and recondition it.  The restoration was completed in June, 2008 and can be seen on the photograph taken after restoration.