James L. Bell papers
Scope and Content
This collection documents the life of James L. Bell and Bell family genealogy. Included are letters to Bell from William J. Hilburn, a fellow soldier; Captain Charles K. Maddox, under whom both Bell and Hilburn served during their military service; Walter A. Wiley; and A. T. Spalding, a pastor at Second Baptist Church in Atlanta. There is also research on the Bell family, gathered by James L. Bell’s great-granddaughter Edith H. Cook, that traces the family back to the 18th century. Cook also created a timeline of Bell’s estimated whereabouts during the Civil War. Documents also include articles on Bell from the Atlanta Journal, the Atlanta Constitution, and the Railway Conductor that highlight his military service and experience as a conductor.
- 1876-1983, undated
- Cook, Edith Harber, 1918- (Person)
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open for research.
Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use
Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright. All requests to publish, quote, or reproduce must be submitted through the Kenan Research Center.
James Lorenzo Bell (1837-1918) was born in Jackson County, Georgia, to William Bell (1767-1845) and Eliza Bell (1804-1864). In 1860, he moved to Atlanta and began working for the Atlanta and West Point Rail Road Company. On May 31, 1861, Bell enlisted as a private in the Seventh Georgia Infantry. Bell claimed that during the Battle of Fair Oaks in Virginia in October 1864, he captured the 19th Wisconsin Federal Infantry Regiment and thereby attracted the notice of General Robert E. Lee who promoted him to sergeant. After the war, Bell returned to the Atlanta and West Point Rail Road Company where he worked as a passenger conductor for fifty years. He married Alice Magnon and they had one daughter, Eva. In 1893, Eva Bell married Mauson Wilson, and they had four children: Mrs. Paul T. Harber, Alice, Helen, and James.
System of Arrangement
This collection is arranged alphabetically according to titles supplied by staff.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
This collection was processed in 2019.
- Atlanta and West Point Rail Road Company
- Bell family
- Bell, James L.
- Confederate States of America. Army. Georgia Infantry Regiment, 7th
- Georgia -- Genealogy
- Lee, Robert E., (Robert Edward), 1807-1870
- Railroad conductors -- Georgia -- Atlanta
- United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Personal narratives, Confederate
- Virginia -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865
- James L. Bell papers
- Hallie Lonial
- April 2019
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Language of description note
- Finding aid is written in English.