The three dials atop the Cass County Historic Courthouse have been removed for refurbishing.
Part of the clock will be worked on at Essence of Time near Buffalo, N.Y., while some work has been subcontracted to Dimensional Innovations in Overland Park. Presiding Commissioner Jeff Cox said he expects the dials to be back and functioning in the tower this summer.
The three dials, when mounted, face east, west and south of the historic courthouse, which has caused some speculation among residents as to the conspicuous absence of a north-facing dial.
According to County Treasurer Steve Cheslik, one explanation has it that the motive for the missing fourth dial may have derived from Civil War days.
“One legend is that when the clock was added to the bell tower in the early 1900s, the citizens of the county, harboring strong feelings and bad memories about the North’s harsh treatment of Cass County citizens during the Civil War — see Order No. 11 — did not want to acknowledge the ‘North’ by putting a clock dial on the north of the tower,” Cheslik said.
General Order No. 11 was an 1863 Union Army directive that called for the evacuation of citizens in rural western Missouri in an attempt to hinder guerrilla tactics.