Johannes Bell (23 September 1868 – 21 October 1949) was a Germanjurist and politician (Centre Party). During the Weimar Republic era, he briefly served as Minister of Colonial Affairs, Minister of Transport (1919/20), and as Minister of Justice (1926/27). He was one of the two German representatives who signed the Treaty of Versailles in June 1919.
Johannes Bell was born on 23 September 1868 in Essen in what was then the Rhine Province of Prussia, as the son of Josef Bell, an engineer, and his wife Josefine (née Steuer). A Roman Catholic, Bell married Trude Nünning in 1896.
Bell was a member of the first democratically elected governments of Germany, the Cabinet Scheidemann, Cabinet Bauer and Cabinet Müller I. In February 1919, Bell became Reichskolonialminister (Minister of Colonial Affairs) and he held that post until the ministry was dissolved in November 1919. Together with Hermann Müller (SPD), Bell signed the Treaty of Versailles for Germany on 28 June 1919. After June 1919, he also was Reichsverkehrsminister (Minister of Transport). In this capacity, Bell was instrumental in the creation of the Deutsche Reichsbahn, which involved the nationalization of various regional railway lines. He remained in office just long enough to see the National Assembly approve the unification of railways and then resigned in May 1920.
Bell was also a senior figure in the parliamentary group of the Zentrum and the author of numerous publications, making him a well-known political figure.
Johannes Bell once again served as a minister of Germany from July 1926 to February 1927 in the cabinet of Wilhelm Marx, as Reichsjustizminister (Minister of Justice) and minister for the occupied territories. After 1930, he was chairman of the Reichstag committee on violations of international law.
After the Nazis seized power in 1933, Bell retired from politics. He died on 21 October 1949 in Würgassen/Weser.