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Bell Family Collection

Identifier: DC015

Scope and Contents

The collection is organized into the following series: 1) Samuel Bell- Biographical; 2) Samuel Bell- Family; 3) Samuel Bell - Diary; 4) Samuel Bell- Genealogy; 5) Marcia Smith Bell Papers; 6) Photographs; and 7) Memorabilia. The biographical information includes materials about Samuel Henry Bell and his family. There is a small diary/notebook containing notes and thoughts about World War I. There is much information about the Bell family history and genealogy. There is a small amout of information about Mrs. Bell. There are photographs of Samuel Henry Bell, Marcia Bell Mitchell, and the family. The memorabilia includes a set of Bibles presented to Mrs. Bell at Christmas, 1876, the engraving plate for Marcia Bell Mitchell's wedding invitations, a few bookmarks, insignia from Dr. Bell's military uniform and a poster for the Marcia Bell Mitchell Room in the College's Guest House.


  • Creation: 1873 - 1957


Biographical / Historical

Samuel Henry Bell graduated from Davidson College in 1870. He graduated from Columbia seminary in 1873 and was ordained to the Presbytery of Savannah. In 1893 Washington College awarded him the degree of Doctor of Divinity. He was commissioned a chaplain in the U.S. Army and served in various posts in the U.S. and abroad. He also pursued a passion for genealogical history. Dr. Bell married Marcia Eberenz Smith. The couple had three children; Marcia, Merle, and Margaret. Mrs. Smith, Merle, and Margaret all predeceased Dr. Bell, who at the time of his death was one of Davidson's oldest and most distinguished alumni. Dr. Bell's estate was willed to his daughter, Mrs. Marcia Bell Mitchell. When she died, she left her estate to Davidson College. At the time of her death in 1962 she left Davidson $835,000; the largest single bequest ever made to Davidson College at that point.


0.83 Linear Feet (2 boxes + oversize)



Immediate Source of Acquisition

Bequest of Marcia Bell Mitchell

Processing Information

Processed on 10/08/1994

Bell Family Collection
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Manuscript Collections Repository