Bell, William (1831–1921)

By: Jeanette H. Flachmeier

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: November 1, 1994

William Bell, early settler, Confederate soldier, and legislator, son of Robert and Belinda (Scott) Bell, was born on February 13, 1831, in Rhea County, Tennessee. In 1839 the family moved to Texas and settled south of Mount Enterprise. For about three years Bell carried the mail from Minden to Monroe, Louisiana, then moved to Lamar County, worked in a drugstore, and hauled freight between Gainesville and Jefferson. He spent 1853 to 1856 in California. In 1859 he lost about three-fourths of his herd while driving cattle to California. He subsequently returned to Lamar County and entered the stock business. On January 8, 1861, he married Sarah Lord Van Wey at Rosalie and settled on a farm. The family later moved to Honey Grove. Bell served three years in the Trans-Mississippi Department of the Confederate Army. In 1878 he represented Lamar County in the Sixteenth Legislature. He was a member of the Honey Grove Masonic Lodge. The Bells had four children and celebrated their golden wedding anniversary at Paris, Texas, in 1911. Bell died at the home of his daughter in Paris on July 14, 1921.

Dallas Morning News, February 3, 1911. E. W. Swindells, A Legislative Manual for the State of Texas (2 vols., Austin, 1879, 1883).
  • Ranching and Cowboys
  • Politics and Government
  • Government Officials
  • Trail Drivers and Riders

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Jeanette H. Flachmeier, “Bell, William,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 25, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

November 1, 1994