Topic: Mary Bell (nee Watt) (1860-1949)

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Born in Wanganui, Mary Bell (nee Watt) was described as 'a very kind and gentle lady'. She was my second great grandmother - Debbie McCauley (2012).

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Mary Watt was born in Wanganui on 5 January 1860. Her parents were Alexander and Ann Watt (nee Gerrie) who had emigrated from Scotland to New Zealand aboard the Queen of the Avon in 1859. They had married in Inverury on 8 March 1859. At the time Mary was born the New Zealand Wars were raging and, as they lived near the bush, her mother was very fearful.

At age 20, on 19 May 1881, Mary married Edward Bell (1846-1912) at Turakina. Edward was the son of John and Hannah Bell (nee Law) who had married in South Kirby, England, on 11 February 1834. Edward's father fell off a steeple and died in 1850. Nine years later Hannah and three of her children, including Edward, emigrated to New Zealand aboard the Oriental in 1859.

The children of Mary and Edward Bell:

  1. Greame Bell (1881-?). Born in 1881 (reg. 1881/6784). She married Edward Jewett.
  2. William Bell (1883-?). Born in 1883 (reg. 1883/10796). He died in Australia.
  3. Annie Mary Bell (1885-1968). Born in 1885 (reg. 1885/10760). She died in 1968 (reg. 1968/32841).
  4. Violet Bell (1887-1937). Born in 1887 (reg. 1887/5820). She married Chaulky Vincent. Violet died in 1937 (reg. 1937/24190).
  5. John Edward Bell (1889-1917). Born in Turakina on 27 July 1889 (reg. 1889/8300). He was killed in Belgium during World War I (1914-1918) on 17 June 1917 (reg. 1918/56089) and was buried at Strand Military Cemetery, Comines-Warneton, Hainaut in Belgium (Ref: VI. B. 1.).
  6. Ivy Cecilia Bell (1892-1972). Born in Turakina in 1892 (reg. 1892/1706). She married George Walter Cox in 1918 (reg. 1918/4584). Ivy died in 1972 (reg. 1972/33485).
  7. Mildred Caroline Bell (1894-1978). Born in Fowlers [now Kimbolton] on 6 January 1894 (reg. 1894/5095). She married Thomas Albert Garmonsway (1881-1977) at Otorohanga on 2 August 1915 [separating in 1931]. Mildred died in Tauranga Hospital on 16 May 1978.
  8. Ida May Bell (1896-1896). Born in 1896 (reg. 1896/16424). Ida lived for just eight days (reg. 1896/3428).
  9. Alexander Law Bell (1897-1918). Born in Feilding on 22 July 1897 (reg. 1897/8817). He died of wounds received on the battlefield in France during World War I (1914-1918) on 9 August 1918 (reg. 1918/85611) and was buried at Couin New British Cemetery in Pas-de-Calais, France (Row G, Grave 10).
  10. Percy Lyell Bell (1902-1955). Born in 1902 (re. 1902/7462). He married Edith Taylor. Percy died on 2 May 1955 (reg. 1955/32888).
  11. Allen Gerrie Bell (1904-1983). Born on 29 September 1904 (reg. 1904/18053). He married Blanche Winifred Taylor in 1930 (reg. 1930/6165). Allen died on 28 August 1983.
  12. Vincent Bell (?-?).

In 1896 Mary lost a child, Ida May Bell, at eight days of age. Two sons were killed during World War I (1914-1918).

Joan Cameron describes her grandmother Mary as 'a very kind and gentle lady'.

Edward died, aged 65, on 20 May 1912 of stomach and liver cancer. He was buried in Taupiri Cemetery on 22 May 1912.

Mary died, aged 89, on 21 May 1949 of a heart attack. She was buried in Taupiri Cemetery on 23 May 1949.



Births, Deaths and Marriages Online (New Zealand).

Joan Cameron (daughter of Ivy Cecilia Cox).

Marriage Certificate: Ann Gerrie and Alexander Watt (1859).

Queen of The Avon Passenger List.

This page was archived at perma cc February 2017 https:

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Mary Bell (nee Watt) (1860-1949)

First Names:Mary
Last Name:Watt
Date of Birth:5 January 1860
Place of Birth:Wanganui
Country of birth:New Zealand
Date of death:21 May 1949
Place of death:Hamilton, New Zealand
Place of burial:Taupiri Cemetery
Family Surname:Bell
Spouses name:Edward Bell
Spouses date of birth:24 December 1846
Spouses place of birth:South Kirby, Yorkshire, England
Spouses date of death:20 May 1912
Spouses place of death:Taupiri, New Zealand
Spouses place of burial:Taupiri Cemetery
Spouses nationality:English
Date of marriage:19 May 1881
Place of marriage:Turakina, New Zealand
Fathers name:Alexander Bell
Fathers date of birth:1838
Fathers place of birth:Scotland
Fathers date of death:15 June 1900
Fathers place of death:Hunterville, New Zealand
Mothers name:Ann Gerrie
Mothers date of birth:1837
Mothers place of birth:Scotland
Mothers date of death:1 July 1908
Mothers place of death:Hunterville, New Zealand
Name of the children:Ivy Cecilia Bell, Allen Gerrie Bell, Mildred Caroline Bell, Vincent Bell, Ida May Bell , Alexander Law Bell, Greame Bell , William Bell , Annie Mary Bell , Violet Bell , Percy Lyell Bell , and John Edward Bell

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