Last link to history stolen in Vernon County community

Historic school bell taken from stand
Last link to history stolen in Vernon County community
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In a small town in Vernon County, one of the last pieces of it’s history, is gone. Now residents in Moundville hope the bell, soon will toll.

Moundville, Missouri has a population right around 120 people. “We have a peaceful little town here, no problems…” explains Moundville mayor, Lymon Bott. He’s been moundville’s mayor for the last 32 years of his ninety-one years on this earth.

Lymon says “I started my first year of school at this Moundville School.” Moundville School was previously known as Cooper College. The college was established in the 1890’s. With it came the Moundville bell.

The building was lost in the 1950s, but the bell was saved and given a place of honor atop a plaque on the old site. That’s until this week when it was stolen. Lymon says “The first night I learned of the disappearance, I prayed that somehow, it might return, but it’s hard to say where it went.”

Craig Bott says “The bolts had been cut, and they weren’t rusty or anything, those were fresh cuts.” And fresh wounds for a community that lost it’s only connection to the past.

Craig says “I never saw the building, but I always knew the bell, I grew up here my whole life, that bell was always there, when we were kids we used to hit it with sticks and make it ring.” Lymon says “If it had just been a bell, and not so much meaning to the community, we could always get another bell, but this has a sentimental value.”

Mayor Lymon Bott is offering a $1,000 reward for the return of the bell.