Illinois April 10, 2018
Most People Don’t Know The Liberty Bell Of The Midwest Is Hiding Right Here In Illinois
Symbols of freedom and patriotism are found in more parts of the country than just New England. Illinois is home to some artifacts from America’s inception as it was home to some of the western most battles of the Revolutionary War. One such battle will forever remain a part of history due to what is known as the Liberty Bell of the Midwest in Kaskaskia.
Illinois lovers will especially enjoy getting to know all about one of the state’s tiniest communities and how big a part it has played in America’s story. Scroll on for the full story of the Kaskaskia Bell.
One of the state's tiniest communities, Kaskaskia is almost not even a part of the state at all as it sits on the west side of the Mississippi River and can only be accessed through Missouri.
During the 18th century, the town was home to about 7,000 people, but now just 13 residents call the place home. Many have left due to flooding over the years.
A portion of the Mississippi River rerouted itself in the late 1800s, causing the flooding and repositioning of the town.
Kaskaskia was captured by the British during the French and Indian War and was won again by Virginians in 1778 during the Revolutionary War. The local church bell was rung in celebration and was later known as the Liberty Bell of the West once historians learned the story.
George Rogers Clark was the man who lead the coalition that overtook Kaskaskia from the British. He is the father of a more famous historic figure, William Clark, who was a leader of the well-known Lewis and Clark Expedition of the early 1800s.
Also known as the Kaskaskia Bell, the piece was originally a gift from King Louis XV to the French Catholic colonists who once resided here. The bell was made in 1741 in a town in France called La Rochelle, and it weighs 140 pounds.
This amazing and little-known piece of war history was originally housed in the Church of the Immaculate Conception, but is now kept in a building that was constructed in 1948 known as the Kaskaskia Bell State Memorial. Murals, plaques, and audio detail the history of the bell.
Similar to the the more famous bell found in Philadelphia, there's a crack in this one, too. Though it's only a hairline fracture, the blemish is enough that the bell can no longer be rung.
Guests are welcome to visit the memorial daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and there is no cost to enter. A green button activates the doors to allow visitors inside.
For more fun places to visit, check out
11 historic towns in Illinois that will transport you to the past.
Have you ever visited the Liberty Bell of the Midwest? Share your experiences and photos with us below!