The Highland County Historical Society is taking the first step in creating a history-oriented hospitality experience in the Hillsboro Historic District based on the contributions of the locally-founded C. S. Bell Company.
During its heyday, from 1875 to 1925, the C. S. Bell Company cast and shipped tens of thousands of cast iron church bells, as well as school and farm bells, all over the world.
During the same period, C. S. Bell-made food and feed grinders helped families in North and South America transition from stone mills and grinders to Charles Singleton Bell’s products made from crystal metal derived from Bell’s secret formula.
“Not only did C. S. Bell call us to dinner, his innovative products helped make dinner,” said Tim Koehl, a former C.S. Bell employee, who is coordinating the project.
The first step in the project is the completion of a C. S. Bell mural in Hillsboro on the West Main Street alley opposite the Parker House lot. Artist Pam Kellough has been selected to paint the mural. Her work can be viewed at the Facebook page “Pam Kellough Murals.”
The second step planned for the project is the creation of an app-supported walking trail through Hillsboro’s Historic District from the Scott House to the Highland House and back. “The objective is to create an environment that attracts visitors, compels them to complete their objective and rewards them when completed,” said Koehl.
He said other possibilities for the project include additional artwork and a Highland County driving trail highlighting C. S. Bell bells, such as the large church bell at ground level at Greenfield’s Presbyterian Church and the Sinking Spring octagonal school building bell.
Finally, an app supported virtual global bell trail would allow world travelers to post photos and comments of C.S. Bell bells found all over the world.
“Whether it’s a self-guided historic trail app or a guided county tour, hospitality apps for adventurers have exploded in popularity over the past few years,” said Koehl. “They create an experience you can upload to your devices and go at your own pace.”
Contributions for the project can be made to The Highland County Historical Society, located at 151 E. Main St., Hillsboro Ohio 45133. The historical society is a nonprofit organization. Check with your tax adviser regarding tax deductions.
Koehl said confidential contributions should be marked personal and confidential on the envelope.
For additional information contact project coordinator Koehl at 937-393-3392.
Information for this story was provided by Tim Koehl.
Reach John Hackley at 937-402-2571.