John Bell was born 11 November 1838 in Scotland and he enlisted on 29 January 1864 at the 14 State Street, New York Naval Rendezvous as a Fireman 1st Class for a 1 year enlistment. He was sent to the U.S.S. Tecumseh on 20 April 1864  from the receving ship U.S.S. North Carolina .
On 29 July 1864, Bell was admitted to Naval Hospital Pensacola with hypertrophia (of the heart). On 6 August 1864 he was moved to Naval Hospital New Orleans to make room for wounded from the Battle of Mobile Bay. He was discharged on 10 October 1864 to the U.S.S. Massachusetts for transportation north after a medical survey found him unfit for duty due to "disease of the heart" . At some point he was transferred to the U.S.S. Princeton and later the U.S.S. Donegal and admitted 28 October 1864 to the U.S. Naval Asylum in Philadelphia. There he was found unfit for naval service and given a med sep from the Navy on 6 November 1864.
At some point after the war, Bell returned to Scotland where he died after December 1912.
Awards & Memorials
Alternate Spellings of Name
References and Sources Return of the United States Naval Rendezvous, 14 State Street, New York, NY, for the week ending 30 January 1864
 NARA T1099. An index to rendezvous reports during the Civil War, 1861-1865.
 Hospital Tickets and Case Papers, compiled 1825-1889. ARC ID: 2694723. Department of the Navy, Records of the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery, Record Group 52. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.
 M1469, Case Files of Approved Pension Applications of Civil War and Later Navy Veterans, 1861-1910 ("Navy Survivors' Certificates"), National Archives at Washington, D.C.
"List of men transfered to the U.S.S. Tecumseh from the receiving ship North Carolina, April, 1864" Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion: Series I, Volume 21 West Gulf Blockading Squadron from January 1 to December 31, 1864 (1906)