George Bell

Photo:Primitive Methodist Magazine 1881

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1881

1833-1916

By Geoff Dickinson

George was born on 21 September 1833 at Reedham, Norfolk to parents George and Mary. George senior was a shop-keeper and local preacher. George’s younger brother, Benjamin, also became a PM minister.

Prior to becoming a minister, George worked as a white-smith.

Ministry

George’s obituary records that his character was beautiful. He lived a glorious life. Mentally, morally and spiritually George Bell was great. He had the business acumen of a statesman, and many difficulties propounded to him for solution were safely negotiated.

His preaching was definite and replete with evangelical fervour.

Long after his superannuation, George retained the position of missionary secretary for the district.

Family

George married Martha Boyce (1834-1912) in the summer of 1858 at Great Yarmouth, Norfolk. Census returns identify six children.

  • Albert George (1862-1948) - a grocer and later an innkeeper
  • Annie Alexandria (1863-1958) – married John William Buckle, a grocer, and emigrated to USA in 1892.
  • Robert Ernest (b1866) – a schoolmaster, emigrates to USA in 1894 and becomes a book-keeper
  • Benjamin William (1868-1917) – died in Rhodesia
  • Walter (b1869)
  • Harry Boyce (b1872) - a draper’s assistant and later life assurance superintendent (1911)

George died on 11 December 1916 at Wisbech, Cambridgeshire.

Circuits

  • 1854 Fakenham
  • 1855 Bury St Edmunds
  • 1857 Norwich
  • 1858 Downham
  • 1860 Swaffham
  • 1862 St Ives, Hunts
  • 1864 Rockland
  • 1867 Downham
  • 1873 Cambridge
  • 1878 Ipswich
  • 1880 Leeds l
  • 1884 Southwark
  • 1885 Norwich
  • 1889 Lynn
  • 1891 Idle & Calverley
  • 1893 York l
  • 1896 Horsham
  • 1901 Lynn
  • 1910 Wisbech (Sup)

References

Primitive Methodist Magazine 1881 (portrait); 1912/639 (Martha); 1916/510

PM Minutes 1917/247

W Leary , Directory of Primitive Methodist Ministers and their Circuits , 1990

Census Returns and Births, Marriages & Deaths Registers

Dowsett Family Tree on Ancestry.com

This page was added by Geoff Dickinson on 26/04/2013.