ROCHESTER, Minnesota - It's a piece of history that shined in downtown for decades. Now, the public can help restore it.
Rochester’s central fire station was built in 1898, and a 1,200-pound bell and clock tower was added a year later. The clock was used to sound the hours and to summon the city's firefighters in the event of an emergency. The clock was eventually relocated to the Mayo Civic Center, where it remained until 2015. Because of the renovations at the center, staff moved the bell and clock parts to a temporary storage location.
In 2015, the Rochester Fire Department began spearheading an effort to bring the clock-and-bell tower back to Fire Station 1.
"Having pride in our history, whether the fire department or City of Rochester, in order to participate in that, it's a pretty cool opportunity. It's a unique opportunity."
Chad Kuhlman with RFD hopes the public can help in the efforts.
"When entering into town, and being able to see a piece of history like this, it's a pretty cool thing. It's a special project with very deep meaning not only to the fire department, but certain citizens as well."
The department recently added a scrap metal recycling drive to aid in the effort. Metal can be dropped off in the two dumpsters in the parking lot of White's Cleaning and Restoration, at 3800 W. River Parkway NW. In addition, pavers can also be bought to support the effort. For more information on the project, click here.