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Sad Day in Belltown USA

Last December we blogged about the Bevin Bros. Manufacturing Co., owned by Washington and Lee University alumnus Matt Bevin. The company, which makes 200 varieties of bells, and Matt had been featured on a National Public Radio story.

Matt, of the Class of 1989, was back on NPR again this week. But this was no holiday story. 

Last weekend the Bevin Bros. factory in East Hampton, Conn., burned to the ground in a fire likely caused by a lightning strike. Meanwhile, thieves apparently stole hundreds of the bells that had survived the fire.

Bevin Bros., founded in 1832 by Matt’s great-great-great grandfather, was the last of 30 bell factories that once existed in East Hampton, which is known as “Belltown.” The company manufactured the first bicycle bells.

Matt told the Hartford Courant that he will rebuild, and added in the NPR interview that he was willing to take the significant financial hit because “this is Belltown, baby. And bells should be ringing in Belltown.”