University of Lynchburg’s Snidow Chapel bell and Victory Bell will join a nationwide chorus commemorating the end of the Civil War this Thursday.
As part of the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War, the National Parks Service organized “Bells Across the Land” to take place on April 9. Bells will ring in Appomattox at 3 p.m., marking the moment that Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant concluded the meeting in which they agreed to the terms of Confederate surrender.
Thousands of colleges, churches, museums, and other sites will then ring bells beginning at 3:15 p.m. for four minutes—one minute for each year of the war. LC is one of several sites participating in Lynchburg, including two other colleges and the Lynchburg Museum.
“Lynchburg has a great deal of history connected to the Civil War and was Lee’s destination before his army was blocked at Appomattox,” said Doug Harvey, director of the Lynchburg Museum and organizer of local Bells Across the Land participation.
The Snidow Chapel bell can be heard throughout the neighborhood surrounding LC and is rung by a programmed timer. The Victory Bell, however, will be rung by a group of students.
Completed in 1993 and made possible in part by a gift from the Class of 1992, the Victory Bell tower houses the old College bell, originally rung to begin and dismiss classes and at the end of victorious varsity games. The tradition of ringing the bell for athletic victories continues, and the bell is also rung at the close of the commencement ceremonies and for other special occasions.
Later on Thursday, LC will host a talk about Abaraham Lincoln, who served as president of the United States during the Civil War. John McKee Barr will present “Understanding Why He Was Hated in Order to Understand Why He Was Loved: Loathing Abraham Lincoln as an American Tradition” in Schewel 231, at 4:30 p.m. The lecture will focus on the staunch criticisms lodged against Lincoln by his contemporaries and by more recent Americans on the right and the left.