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Elliott Carillon Tower


Artist's rendering of the Elliott Tower, which will be located north of Kresge Library. 

Donated by longtime supporters Hugh and Nancy Elliott, the university is constructing a 151-foot Elliott Carillon Tower. The tower is designed to be a rallying point for student activities and will create a stunning visual centerpiece for Oakland’s campus. It will be complete with a water fountain, garden and decorative landscaping.

The structure will become the 14th carillon tower in Michigan, and only the fourth located on a university campus. Its 49 bells will be designed and cast by The Verdin Company of Cincinnati and the Royal Bellfoundry Petit & Fritsen of the Netherlands.

Dennis Curry, local carillonneur and longtime friend of the Elliotts, will serve as the university carillonneur and establish a program of education and training though the Department of Music.

There will be a regular live playing schedule in addition to the traditional quarter chimes. 



Hugh and Nancy Elliott share thoughts about their generous gift to the Oakland University community.
ABOUT THE DONORS: 

For 15 years, the Elliotts have provided support for a variety of capital projects, scholarships and charitable functions at OU, including:
  • a $2 million gift toward the School of Business Administration
  • endowed scholarship and academic lecture funds
  • contributions toward the Hugh and Nancy Elliott Room in the O’rena
  • President’s Invitational golf outing, which has raised more than $1 million for scholarships
  • athletics volunteer committee dedicated to fundraising

“When you give, it’s the best thing you can do for yourself. I learned many years ago – and it’s true – that even if you give just a little bit, over time, it adds up.” — Hugh Elliott

TIMELINE: 

DID YOU KNOW?

  • The largest bell weighs around 5,000 pounds and is five feet in diameter
  • Total weight of all bells is over 30,000 pounds (over 15 tons)
  • The carillon tower is one of the tallest bell towers on a college campus in the U.S.
  • Founded in 1842, Verdin is the oldest privately-held manufacturing business in the state of Ohio.
  • The carillon bell tower will feature a fully chromatic 49-bell carillon ranging from low C, which weighs around 5,000 pounds, to high C, at 24 pounds. 
  • The traditional hand-action instrument provides the complete musical range to play any musical composition. 
  • Twenty five of the bells will also have the capability of being played automatically.
  • The clock on the Elliott Carillon Tower is approximately 9’ 6” in diameter. 
  • The minute hand from center (of clock) to outside tip is 54 ¾” long.