Bicentennial Bell Project – Ribbon Cutting

Let freedom ring! 48 years ago, Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II visited Philadelphia. In honor of the Country’s 200th birthday, the Queen presented the City with the Bicentennial Bell, symbolizing the enduring friendship, and strong cultural, political and economic ties between the US and the UK.

In 1976, Her Late Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, said, “Today, to mark the 200th anniversary of that declaration, it gives me the greatest pleasure, on behalf of the British people, to present a new bell to the people of the United States of America. It comes from the same foundry as the Liberty Bell but written on the side of this Bicentennial Bell are the words ‘Let Freedom Ring.’ It is a message in which both our people can join and which I hope will be heard around the world for centuries to come.”

In 2013, The Bicentennial Bell was put into storage, while its new home at 3rd and Walnut streets was being designed. Today, July 12, 2024, Hannah Young, His Majesty’s Consul General joined us in Philadelphia for the ribbon cutting ceremony. The newly reinstalled bell in the Bicentennial Bell Garden, formerly the Benjamin Rush Garden, glistened in the morning rain as representatives from The National Park Service, the State of Pennsylvania, The City of Philadelphia, and UK Government officials as well as individuals from the private sector spoke to a large crowd gathered for the ceremony.

We’d like to recognize The Landenberger Family Foundation who partnered with the Independence Historical Trust to create the new home for the Bicentennial Bell; Holzman Iron Studio Ltd., which designed and built the 7,500-pound frame that holds the bell; and the landscape architecture firm that designed the garden, Studio Bryan Hanes.

The Bicentennial Bell, five times heavier than the Liberty Bell, sits proudly atop a beautifully designed arch surrounded by flowers in the historic Society Hill neighborhood of Philadelphia. The garden features plants that the US and UK exchanged in the 18th and 19th centuries. It is a peaceful place to sit, stroll and admire, welcoming city dwellers, visitors, and citizens from all corners of the globe. We encourage you to visit.

Click here to view photos.

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