Lansing's Rotary Steam Clock
Given to the city by the local Rotary club in honor of Lansing's 150th birthday, this steam-powered clock is powered by a steam engine that was built in 1927, seventy years prior to the construction and dedication of the clock. Visitors can see the steam engine operate by peering through clear windows. The engine came from a former clock that was built by the Seth Thomas Clock Company. While steam powers the clock and the hourly chimes, the carillon is powered by electricity and plays two songs a day form a computer library of thousands of songs. The tower stands at the corner of Wentworth Park that was previously home to Hotel Kerns until it was destroyed in a tragic fire in 1934 that resulted in the death of thirty-four people.
Backstory and Context
The clock tower is 31-feet tall and features five steam-powered whistles and a carillon which was installed in 2010 to replace the previous carillon after it no longer operated following a two year period when it was not connected to power owing to construction in the area. The clock's whistles power chimes that sound on the hour and the half-hour while the carillon plays songs five minutes after noon and five minutes after five in the evening.