Volume 74, Number 3 | June 8- 14, 2005

Villager photos by Elisabeth Robert

At left, Ol’ Jeff, Jefferson Market Library’s 12,000-pound bell, hangs proudly. At right, Marilyn Dorato, left, and Cynthia Crane hold plaque that will be affixed to Jefferson Market Library’s wall.

You can ring my bell-ell-ell, ring my bell

Friends of the Jefferson Market Library Bell celebrated the ninth anniversary of restoration of the 12,000-pound bell on June 2 and the dedication of the bronze plaque with the names of the people and institutions who funded the restoration. At the Jefferson Market Garden celebration, Marilyn Dorato and Cynthia Crane showed off the plaque, which will be affixed to the 10th St. wall of the former courthouse designed by Jefferson Withers and Calvert Vaux. The bell, cast in 1851 as a fire bell and hung in a wooden fire tower on the site, was re-hung in the 172-foot-tall courthouse tower at 450 Sixth Ave. when it was completed in 1874.

Bell ringers honored by name on the plaque are David Jay Clark and Patricia King; Barbara Comfort; Cynthia Crane and Ted Story; Prudence Crowther; Barbara Datesh and Steven Z. Kraus; Marilyn and Charles Dorato; Elizabeth Ely and Jonathan Greenberg; Carol Feinman; Elizabeth Gilmore; William E. Smith and Genevieve Smith; Dr. Howard Hess and Robin Hess; Norma Langworthy; Alfred T. Stanley Foundation; Federation to Preserve the Greenwich Village Waterfront and Great Port and Ben Green; Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation and Andrew Berman; and West Village Committee and Peter Falk.

Because the 10th St. side of the building, now a library, has scaffolding erected earlier this year because of crumbling masonry, the plaque will be affixed to it at a later date, Crane said.

Albert Amateau

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