Location in Gilchrist County and the state of Florida
|• Mayor||Thomas Brown|
|• Total||1.6 sq mi (4.2 km2)|
|• Land||1.6 sq mi (4.2 km2)|
|• Water||0 sq mi (0 km2)|
|Elevation||69 ft (21 m)|
|• Density||218.1/sq mi (83.1/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||0278410|
Bell is a town in Gilchrist County, Florida, United States. The population was 349 at the 2000 census. It is situated in the northern part of the county. The Middle/High School is home to approximately 750 students.
The town was founded in the 1890s, named after a beauty contest winner, Bell Fletcher. In the early 1900s, a railway was built, passing through the town on its route between Starke and Wannee. A train depot was built around 1905, and the restored depot building is now the Town Hall.
On September 18, 2014, a man, identified as 51-year-old ex-convict Don Charles Spirit, shot dead his daughter Sarah and her six children. He then committed suicide after police officers responded to the scene of the mass shooting.
Bell is located at (29.754443, -82.861712).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 1.6 square miles (4.1 km2), all of it land.
As of the census of 2000, there were 349 people, 125 households, and 91 families residing in the town. The population density was 213.5 people per square mile (82.7/km²). There were 149 housing units at an average density of 91.2 per square mile (35.3/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 95.99% White, 2.01% African American, 0.29% Native American, 1.43% from other races, and 0.29% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.43% of the population.
There were 125 households out of which 43.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.0% were married couples living together, 16.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.4% were non-families. 21.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.79 and the average family size was 3.21.
In the town the population was spread out with 30.4% under the age of 18, 10.0% from 18 to 24, 28.7% from 25 to 44, 16.6% from 45 to 64, and 14.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 90.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.1 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $30,156, and the median income for a family was $30,987. Males had a median income of $21,250 versus $23,125 for females. The per capita income for the town was $11,790. About 13.1% of families and 17.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.4% of those under age 18 and 5.9% of those age 65.
There are several schools that serve the Bell area and are serviced by the Gilchrist County School District.
These schools include:
- Bell Elementary
- Bell Middle/High School
- Town of Bell, Florida, retrieved 2012-11-26
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Florida man kills 6 grandkids, daughter"
- "Florida man kills his daughter and her six children"
- "Don Spirit Kills Daughter, Six Grandchildren in Bell, Florida"
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- Hanna, Jason and Steve Almasy. "Police: Florida felon who killed 7 relatives wasn't allowed to have gun." CNN. September 19, 2014. Retrieved on September 26, 2014.