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Roll of Honour

Hartlepool seafarers lost at sea

Bell, William

35, Durham Street, Hartlepool
West Hartlepool

Lost on the steamship Manchuria.

William Bell was born at West Hartlepool in 1899, and was baptised at Throston, on January 1st, 1890. His parents, John (born West Hartlepool around 1850), and Mary Ellen (nee McDougall, born Hartlepool and baptised at Stranton Church on the 28th July, 1861), had married at St. Hilda's Church, Hartlepool, on December 13th, 1879. John was a Driller, and the family were living in Hermit Street, Hartlepool at the time of William's birth.

John and Mary had ten children, seven of whom survived infancy; the 1891 Census shows John and Mary living at No.14, Hermit Street, with children James (aged 9), Mary E. (7), John (4), and one-year old William.

The 1911 Census shows John (listed as a Ship Yard Hand Driller), and Mary living at No.2, Blaydon Street, Throston, with their children John (aged 24, Marine Engineer Steam Ship), William (21, Ship Plate Rivetter), Ruth Isabele (18), Edith (14), Thomas (12), and Arthur (10).

William Bell was lost on the steamship Manchuria on 17th October, 1917, when she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U-53, while on a voyage from La Goulette to West Hartlepool with a cargo of iron ore.

At the time of his death, William's parents were living in Durham Street.