The clock tower was built in 1871 under the direction of James Noble, Jr. and his family. It was originally built to hold the 250,000 gallons of water that would serve the city. 10 foot sheets of iron were used to build the frame of the tank, and red bricks surround it. The tank itself stood 63 feet tall and 26 feet wide. Atop the water tank, there is a bell and four clock faces located within a structure that stands 41 feet tall. Both the clock and bell were added in 1872, just one year after the original tower was built. The clocks were made by E. Howard Clock Company. Each face is nine feet in diameter, the hour hand is three feet, six inches long, and the minute hand is four feet, three inches long. The bell within the clock tower is made of genuine bronze and measures 40 inches wide. Engraved on the rim is the date 1872. With the addition of the clocks and bell the clock tower now stands 104 feet tall and can be seen from almost any part of downtown Rome.
The Rome Jaycees raised over $80,000, in 1986. The money was raised in order to provide landscaping on top of Neely Hill around the clock tower. The historical clock tower is now a museum, which opened in 1995, once again with the help of the Rome Jaycees. The inside of the water tank now displays works of art by local artist Chuck Smultz. Also inside are the 107 steps spiraling around the tower to the top.