Blennerhassett Island "Lets Freedom Ring"

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WOOD COUNTY, W.Va.-(WTAP) On Blennerhassett Island, the Fourth of July was marked not with fireworks, but with a bell resembling the Liberty Bell.

The island management has held a bell-ringing ceremony on every Independence Day for nearly the past two decades.

It is part of a national observance authorized by Congress in 1963, calling for the ringing of a bell at 2 P.M., on the anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

"A bell rung 13 times signifies the honor and formation of the 13 original colonies, and celebrates our nation's freedom from England beginning in 1776," Assistant Park Superintendent Craig T. Pyles told the small audience gathered on the island Thursday afternoon.

The event also including the firing of a musket by members of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

The bell used in the ceremony was once located in Parkersburg's DeSales Heighs academy, which closed in the 1980's.