Bell Plate

Bell Plate

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This bell plate was made in the United States, around 1900 to 1910. It is made of metal with a metal hanger attached with rope. It was used for imitating locomotive or fire bells.

This bell plate was used by William T. Armstrong (1879-1965), orchestra leader and musician in vaudeville and silent film theaters. Armstrong grew up in South River, New Jersey and began playing drums at the age of 14. He continued his musical career through the mid-1910s, after which, Armstrong began work in banking and finance. This artifact is part of a collection of drums, sound effect instruments, and other percussion instruments used by Armstrong.

Currently not on view
Object Name
bell plate
date made
place made
United States
Physical Description
metal (overall material)
rope (overall material)
overall: 3/8 in x 8 1/16 in x 9 in;.9525 cm x 20.47875 cm x 22.86 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
Gift of Pamela A. Carlin and Evelyn A. Mark in memory of William T. Armstrong
See more items in
Cultural and Community Life: Musical Instruments
Music & Musical Instruments
Popular Entertainment
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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