The tradition of change ringing continues in Marietta, Georgia:
St. James’ Episcopal Church has a nice ring to it: Marietta resident helps to continue historic tradition
Jay Williams dances with the bells at St. James’ Episcopal Church. He is one of 15 change ringers responsible for ringing tower bells that call worshipers to Sunday services, church events and other occasions.
Change ringing originated in England around 1600. It is different than playing traditional melodies because the bells are rung by methods, a series of changing sequences, announced by the conductor, Williams explained.
Change ringers ring their bells by vertically pulling long ropes that swing the bronze cast bells in almost a complete circle. St. James’ eight bells weigh as much as 593 pounds.
“Think of (change ringing) as a dance,” Williams said. “(Change ringing) is like country dancing because you’re all dodging back and forth with each other. If somebody goes ahead of you, you have to know that they’re going to go ahead of you and you better fall behind, otherwise (the bells) are going to crash.”