Our Towns

Zion Lutheran to Rededicate, Ring Historic Bell 

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Zion Lutheran Church will be re-dedicating and ringing its historic church bell Sept. 24, two days short of its 102nd birthday.

The bell was installed at Zion’s first building, at Tippecanoe and Canfield roads, in September of 1915, and was rung for the first time on Sept. 26, 1915.  

The bell was manufactured by the C. S. Bell Co. in Hillsboro. It remained in service until the first property was sold and the church moved to 3300 Canfield Road in 1957. The church salvaged the bell out of the old church at that time to bring to the new one. The bell bowl alone weighs 487 pounds. It sat on a platform outside the church until it was put in storage for a large construction project in 1999. 

A new platform for the bell was built by Ryan Hone Masonry and was designed to look like the bases of the arches holding up the front portico. The bell was sent to A Plus Powder Coaters in Columbiana for bead blasting and powder coating, and missing parts were sourced from Lower Bells in Tennessee.

The bell will be rung for the first time by Sarah Matkoskey, whose family paid for the restoration in memory of her husband, Charles. The platform was paid for by memorial funds given by Anna Mae and Roy Wiff Jr. in memory of Roy Wiff and memorial funds given in memory John Bokesch.

“Zion Lutheran Church is a significant church in the Valley’s history,” Pastor Duane Jesse said. “It is a dear artifact of Zion’s staying power — and by Zion, I mean all the saints and sinners who have made this great church what it remains to be today and a testimony to God’s faithfulness to us.”

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.