The Cory Bell

The Cory Bell was brought to Western Pennsylvania by Elnathan Cory, a Revolutionary War soldier from the John of Southold Long Island line. It is rung at every Western Pennsylvania Cory Reunion.

The History of the Cory Bell

The following letter was written by Mrs. Mary St. John on May 5th, 1967. Elmer M. Cory of 6234 Graceland Avenue Cincinnati, Ohio had an exact copy of this letter notarized by Thomas E. Fouch notary public in the state of Ohio.

This is what the letter said.

The Cory bell was bought by Elnathan Cory my grandfather in the second year of the Revolutionary War in which he served for seven years.

His neighbor and he were going home from a battle when they heard this bell and they talked about it and decided to follow the sound until they would find it. They thought of turning back several times but pressed on and at last were rewarded by finding a large ox lying down chewing his (cud). They then went to the cabin near by and asked the man if he owned it and if he would sell the bell? He said he would and that he would take a dollar for each mile they had traveled. My Grandfather said he did not know how many miles they came. The man said, “You are soldiers from the field and it is just four miles to the battle field so you may have the bell for 4 dollars”, so each man gave 2 dollars. When the man that sold it said, “Now when you get home who will it belong to?” He suggested that they draw cuts for it and the man that gets it can pay the other when convenient. My Grandfather and his neighbor agreed to this. The man took two splints from a broom. When they had drawn found the bell had fallen to my Grandfather and when he died left it to my brother Cory. He left it to his son Cory. Now it has been in three generations.

It can only go to those named Corey or to Corey Elnathan. My mother Matilda McCown looked after it while she lived.

I now have the care and appreciate it as so much gold and I hope and pray that the hand it falls in when I am gone will take care of it and pass it on to the next Corey as that was my Grandfather’s request.

Mrs. Mary St. John East Palestine, Ohio