The Story of the "Bell" at Dorchester Academy

The Story of the "Bell" at Dorchester Academy (HM5RL)

Location: Midway, GA 31320 Liberty County
Country: United States of America

N 31° 48.093', W 81° 27.866'

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Dorchester Academy

— Museum Of African American History —

The Midway Congregational Church bell played a very important role in the lives of Dorchester Academy students. It kept time by ringing with an echo that could be heard seven to ten miles away. The bell rang every day at six, seven, eight, nine, twelve, and three o'clock. The six o'clock bell awoke campus residents and marked a start time for area students walking to school. The breakfast bell rang at seven o'clock. The eight o'clock bell signaled the start of classes. When the ringing stopped, all students had to be inside the building. The bell ringer would extend the rings if he saw kids hurrying down the road. Often, students who walked to school would literally be saved by the bell. The nine o'clock ringing meant that all classes had started and thosewho were late would not be allowed to attend school that day. The lunch bell rang at twelve o'clock, and the three o'clock bell dismissed pupils from school for the day.


The African American members of the Midway Congregational Church broke away to form their own church in 1872 and later build their own church in 1894. It was at their request that Dorchester Academy developed. The American Missionary Association supports both the school and church for a time. This connection is why the church bell was used by Dorchester Academy.
HM NumberHM5RL
Year Placed2004
Placed ByCity of Flemington
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Saturday, September 13th, 2014 at 11:02pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17R E 456037 N 3518533
Decimal Degrees31.80155000, -81.46443333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 31° 48.093', W 81° 27.866'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds31° 48' 5.58" N, 81° 27' 51.96" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)912
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 8600-9098 Hwy 84, Midway GA 31320, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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