The shaft of the Memorial Bell Tower was completed with aid from the Works Progress Administration (WPA).
The forgotten bell was rediscovered in 2006. It was originally on the top of Metropolitan Hall, in downtown Raleigh, then moved to a fire station on Morgan and Salisbury streets, and finally to Withers Hall. It signaled the end of classes and may have been intended to fill in the Memorial Bell Tower. In 2008, it was given back to the city of Raleigh.
Students learn that State College acquired the bell and bronze tablet in the Memorial Bell Tower from the U.S. cruiser Charlotte (a ship that fought for the U.S. Navy in WWI and was retired after 17 years of service on Nov. 11, 1935). The bell was rung once - when a group of students celebrating a basketball defeat over UNC broke into the tower and rang the bell.