Free Settler or Felon
Convict and Colonial History

Archibald Bell - Settler

Corinda - Map 3

Archibald Bell
Archibald Bell was born 15 April 1804, one of the ten children of Maria (Kitching) and Archibald Bell.

Arrival in Australia

He arrived in Australia with his family on board the Young William when he was three years old. His father Archibald Bell served with the N.S.W. Corp, and as a military commander at the Hawkesbury and Magistrate at Windsor.

Bell's Line of Road

In 1823 Archibald junior discovered a new route across the Blue Mountains from Richmond to Cox's River. This became known as the Bell's Line of Road and became the cattle road of the north and west. He also explored the Hunter River district. For his discovery of the track across the Blue Mountains he was granted 1000 acres which was selected near Singleton and called Corinda. The location can be seen below centre on the map -

Archibald Bell James Black William Brooks John Cobb Henry Dangar John Earl John Gaggin William Harper William Kelman John Larnach George Wyndham George White Joseph Underwood A.B. Spark Benjamin Sullivan Alexander Shand Helenus Scott James Mitchell George Wyndham Helenus Scott John Larnach Shaw Stewart Early Settler Map 4

St. Helier's

In 1828 Archibald junior was a tenant and employed as an overseer at St. Heliers, the estate of Colonel Henry Dumaresq near Scone. Convicts were assigned to him at St. Heliers and also at Corinda where he built a two story stone house, probably with the use of convict labour.


One sister, Mary Ann Fennell married Francis Little of Invermein in 1831. In 1833, the same year his sister Sophie married Henry P. Dutton, Archibald Bell junior married Francis Ann North, daughter of Windsor Magistrate Lieutenant Samuel North.


Archibald Bell jun. and Henry P. Dutton were active in Singleton community life attending meetings such as the Patrick Plains Turf Club and served as Trustees for the Singleton Church. Archibald Bell was nominated for district council and was a Steward at the Patrick Plains Races.

In 1847 along with other prominent settlers, Archibald Bell jun. was introduced to the Governor Sir Charles Fitzroy on his visit to the district.


On the centenary of the founding of Singleton, Corinda was described -

The house was a long two storied building facing the river and was built of stones quarried at Glendon and brought across the river in punts. When Corinda homestead had fallen to decay (for Mr. Bell returned to Belmont, and this estate passed from his family), the stones were removed to Belford to build the Church of England there, so that it forms an interesting link with the past. [1]

Archibald Bell was renown for his coach and hackney horses which he bred at Corinda. He owned other properties in the Valley and later moved to Milgarra and then to Pickering near Merton, the former estate of Captain John Pike.


Archibald's wife Frances North Bell died at Milgarra in December 1852 age 27. Archibald Bell died at Pickering on 9th August 1883.....

The Hon. Archibald Bell M.L.C., whose death was announced in our columns yesterday, was an old colonist, and a son of Mr. Archibald Bell, who was a member of the old Council before the days of Parliamentary elections. About 14 years ago Mr. Bell entered the Legislative Assembly as a representative of the Upper Hunter, for which electorate he was never defeated. Subsequently he retired from the active political arena of the Assembly, and entered the Legislative Council in October 1879 and was a member at the time of his decease. Though not a prominent politician or in the habit of speaking much in the House, Mr. Bell performed his legislative duties conscientiously, and both in and out of Parliament he was popular among all classes for his courtesy and amiable temperament. His age at the time of his death was about 80.[2]

James Millar purchased Corinda from Archibald Bell.

Assigned Convict Servants

The following men were assigned to Archibald Bell junior. The Records aren't always specific as to which estate the convicts were assigned. Some were assigned to Bell when he was employed as Superintendent at St. Heliers, others at Segenhoe / Invermein, and the rest to his estate, Corinda. Workers may not have remained on the same estates they were assigned to. They were often transferred or loaned to different farms and stations at harvest and shearing times. Some may have also been assigned to Archibald Bell senior's estate Belmont at Richmond as well.

They were convicts and ex-convicts unless otherwise stated. Transportation of convicts ceased in 1840 and there were fewer convicts assigned afterwards although many remained the district as they worked out their sentence until the 1850s. The list below states Ship and Year of arrival; the name of the Estate, year of assignment and occupation are included where known:

Aldwell, John
Canada 1815; St. Hiliers 1828; shepherd

Askeren, John
Albion 1827; Upper Hunter; 1827

Bailey, John
Roslin Castle 1834; Patrick Plains 1837

Barastan, James
Marquis of Hastings 1828; Invermein 1837

Barrett, George
Lloyds 1833; Invermein 1837

Bridger, William
Recovery 1819; Newcastle district 1824

Broom, George
Atlas 1816; Newcastle district 1825

Brown, George
Emigrant per Lady Kennaway 1838; farm overseer

Careen, Patrick
Sir Godfrey Webster 1826; St. Heliers 1828; stock keeper

Carroll, Thomas
Hive; Patrick Plains 1837

Cartwright, James
Hive; Invermein 1837

Cojonney, Francis
Came free per Success 1825; St. Heliers 1828; house servant

Crane, John
Countess of Harcourt 1824; St. Heliers 1828; groom

Craven, Uriah
Prince Regent 1827; St. Heliers 1828; watchman

Curtis, John
John Barry 1819; Corinda 1828 (free by servitude); labourer

Davies, David
Speke 1826; St. Heliers 1828

Emmett, Henry
Ocean 1818; Corinda 1828; shepherd

Ellis, Joseph
Asia 1832; Upper Hunter; carter and labourer

Ellston, Mary
St. Heliers 1828; servant, came free

Fagan, Patrick
John Barry 1821; Corinda 1825-1828; stockman

Farden, Mary
Corinda 1828

Fearn, Richard
Exmouth 1831; Invermein 1837

Felkins, John
Katherine Stewart Forbes 1830; Invermein1837; groom

Fitzgerald, William
Java 1833; Invermein 1837

Fussell, Simon
Asia 1833; Invermein 1837

Hall alias Raynor, Thomas
York 1831; Invermein; 1837

Hammett, Phillip
Norfolk 1825; Corinda 1828; bullock driver

Hardy, William
Speke 1826; St. Heliers 1828

Healy, John
Sir Godfrey Webster; Segenhoe 1828; shepherd

Hickey, Thomas
Forth 1830; Invermein 1833; shepherd

Hockley, John
Marquis of Huntley 1828; Segenhoe1828; painter

Hinton, Thomas
Speke 1821; Corinda 1828; shepherd; T/L holder

Hitchman/Aitcheson/ Hutchinson Daniel
Guildford 1822; Corinda 1825 - 1828

Hogan, John
Dorothy 1820; Newcastle district 1825

Hodgson, William
Albion 1827; St. Heliers 1828

Johnson/Johnston, Edward/ Henry
John 1832; Invermein 1833 -1837; shepherd

Kinnear, George
Vitoria 1829; Constable employed by Archibald Bell 1833

Lanaghan, Edward
Clyde 1832; Invermein 1837

Lanyard, Peter
Lady Castlreagh 1818; Corinda 1828; stonemason

Leonard, William
Guildford 1816; Hunter Valley 1825

Llewellyn, Daniel
Prince Regent 1827; Invermein 1828; overseer

Lomond, Charles
Albion 1827; Segenhoe 1828; bullock driver

McCarty, Joseph
Camden 1831; Invermein1832

McDade, James
Henry Porcher 1825; Corinda 1828; pigman

McFadyn, Henry
Susan 1839; Emigrant; wheelwright

McCowan, Hugh
Nithsdale 1830; Corinda 1837

Moir, Henry
Albion 1827; St. Heliers 1828; shepherd

Mullen, Michael
Neptune 1838; Corinda 1841

Munton, William
Claudine; Invermein 1833; shepherd

Murphy, Michael
Lady McNaughten 1835, Invermein 1837

Nash, Edward
Recovery 1819; Invermein 1828; farrier

Owen, Samuel
Overseer to Archibald Bell at Segenhoe 1833

Palmer, Thomas
Layton 1829; Segenhoe 1833; watchman

Palmer, William
Planter 1832; Invermein 1837

Pennington, Richard
Albion 1827; St. Heliers 1828; labourer

Perry, William
Marquis of Hastings 1827; St. Heliers 1828; milkman

Polling, William
Speke 1826; Segenhoe 1828; labourer

Pool, William
Adrian 1830; Corinda 1837

Pugsley, Thomas
Neva 1833; Corinda 1837

Rawlins, Robert
Mangles 1824; Segenhoe 1828; carpenter and sawyer

Riley, Owen
Providence 1811; Corinda 1828; shepherd

Robinson, John
Surry 1823; Segenhoe 1828; carpenter

Rogers, John
Isabella 1832; Patrick Plains 1837; stonemason

Rourke, Richard
Lady McNaughten 1835, Invermein 1837

Russell, John
Surry 1834; Segenhoe 1837

Ryan, William
Lady Harewood 1831; Corinda 1838

Riley, Owen
Providence 1811; Patrick Plains 1828; free by servitude, shepherd

Schofield, James
Earl St. Vincent 1820. Overseer employed by William Bell at Gammon Plains

Scrimshaw, William
Roslin Castle 1834; Corinda 1837

Silvester, Henry
Roslin Castle 1834; Corinda 1837

Smith, Joseph
Lady Feversham 1830; Invermein 1837

Smith, Susan
Indispensable 1796; St. Heliers 1828; free by servitude

Smyth, James

Somers, Francis
John 1832; Segenhoe 1837

Stanton, Patrick
Minerva 1819; St. Heliers 1828; house servant

Starkey, James
Speke 1826; St. Heliers 1828

Stiles, William
Royal Admiral 1830; Segenhoe 1837

Taylor, Jeremiah
Burrell 1830; Hunter River 1830

Tobin, James
Dunvegan Castle 1830; assigned on arrival; Corinda 1830 - 1837

Walker, Edward
Exmouth 1831; Invermein 1837

Walker, Joseph
Albion 1827; St. Heliers 1828; labourer

Walters, George
York 1831; Invermein 1837

Watkins, Joseph
Neptune 1818; St. Heliers 1828; gardener

Wells, Thomas
John; Segenhoe; 1837

Wilson, John
Asia 1833; Invermein 1837

Notes and Links

1). Archibald Bell senior's Tombstone - Windsor and Richmond Gazette 15 Jun 1895

Map showing the location of Archibald Bell's estate Corinda. Shown as Kurrandarra on J. Cross's 1828 Map of the Hunter
Map of the Hunter in 1828 showing location of Archibald Bell's estate. Shown as Kurrandarra on the map above


[1]. Singleton Argus 16 March 1920

[2]. Sydney Morning Herald 11 August 1883