Historic bell tolls for school once again


This is a heartwarming human interest story Keokuk Catholic Schools had to share!

The letter is from a former student. It seems that his love of the bell he rang his senior year at St. Peter’s High School in Keokuk caused him to save the object for posterity. Please enjoy this tender recollection of a young man’s adventure. It’s not clear if his act was a prank or something done for love of the bell, but it happened.

“Hi to ALL in Keokuk!

I’m the oldest son of “John.” Looks like after graduating we all kind of left Keokuk. We couldn’t use such a good education anywhere at home.


I was born in St. Patrick, Mo. We moved to Keokuk for the children and Mom, while Dad worked at Burlington Bomb Plant. He was then taken into World War II. I started my schooling at St. Vincent’s Grade School (now leveled) and continued at St. Peter’s High School (now leveled).

During my senior year I was the bell ringer. Start of the school day, break, start and end of each class, lunch, afternoon classes and end of the day.

“The principal’s office — overhead — across the entry stairway. There was a walk-way with banister along the wall — back to the entry door over the stairway office. A heavy wooden trellis was over the window in front of the desk. It did not go to the ceiling. I walked the banister to the partition, hoisted myself over the wall…coming down on the desk. I stepped off onto the chair and picked up the bell. It was under the desk behind the leg. I turned the door handle lock, exited, and closed the door so it would lock. (The bell) has been in my possession ever since.

I am returning this bell to its rightful place. …“RING the BELL!”



So Keokuk Catholic Schools did ring the bell, at the beginning of this school year and for most of the first quarter! It has now been retired to a place of honor within the school.

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