Rome’s most iconic location wasn’t originally built as a clock tower, but rather as the tower for the first public water works in Northwest Georgia. The decagonal structure, 63 feet high and 33 feet in diameter, was built atop one of the city’s Seven Hills, known as Neely Hill. The facility was designed by John W. Noble and built the Noble Brothers firm. The Noble Brothers had come to Rome from Reading, Pennsylvania, and ran a successful steel works nail factory, railcar works, and pottery, among other industrial pursuits.
The clock was made by the E. Howard Clock Company of Waltham, Massachusetts, and installed in October 1872. This was important for the industrialization of Rome, as it acted as a “regulator”, or central timepiece for the community. While the water tower has long been in disuse, the clock still keeps time. For the best views of Rome, you can even climb the stairs to the top for the Clocktower Tour.
National Register of Historic Places