This photo is the George Washington Chapel and National Carillon at Valley Forge. No, its not where George Washington worshiped during the winter of 1777. It is, however, located near Washington’s Continental Army encampment. It is an active Episcopal church, built in 1903. The carillon, bell tower, next to the chapel, was funded by the Daughters of the American Revolution (“DAR”), and constructed in 1953. The carillon houses a museum of revolutionary war relics and many original records of the DAR.
I liked the way the late afternoon sun turns the gray granite stone to a warm, adobe-looking brick. The dark shadow in the “windows” is what first caught my attention, and tweaked my curiosity about the structure. As Cliff Claven (“Cheers” mailman) would say, “Ahhh, its a little known fact that…” the tower houses 58 tuned bronze bells, weighing over 26 tons. The bells have a range of five octaves! Most carillons around the country are programmed to play mechanically, but this one is played by hand.
Hmmm, what course of study and career path gets you to that job? How do you prepare for the job interview, and what does your resume look like? I read For Whom the Bell Tolls, saw the movie Hunchback of Notre Dame, and was first chair at ringing the tardy bell at my country school? How does one practice and rehearse … in private? Is the carilloner a member of the local musicians union? Who critique’s his work? How does the carilloner keep in shape to pull all of those ropes … and several at a time? Soooo many questions.
Thought for the Day: Do not hire a man who does your work for money, but him that does it for the love of it. Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)