from THE VALLEY ADVERTISER 15-1-1975
The Rotary Club of Lauieton has completed what it terms as the GRANNY BELL Project and will on Saturday January 25 1975 at 3 pm conduct a dedication ceremony at the Laurieton Cemetery.
GRANNY BELL as she was affectionately known is a legend in the Camden Haven District.
Born at Taree on June 27 1859 she married John Bell in 1878 and from this union came a family of none children : James, Norman, Anne, Janet, Mary, Roy, Elizabeth and William.
Shortly after her marriage, they were settled on the Tweed River where for a number of years they engaged in cane farming until her husband suffered an unfortunate accident which rendered him an invalid and they moved to Laurieton in 1892.
To supplement their earnings and support their large family, Granny conducted a boarding house and established herself as a professional nurse and it was in this calling that she became a legend to all.
It would be impossible to narrate the many things Granny did in those early days for without doctors and the only transport being horse and buggy or boat, she was undaunted in her efforts to reach a sick bed.
She waded through flood waters , crossed flooded rivers by boat and travelled for miles in an open sulky to reach the sick, attend an accident or bring a child into the world.
She was always amongst the first to arrive at a stricken household , carrying out all that was required without fee or reward.
Granny will always be remembered not only as a professional nurse but one who on many occasions left her own sick bed, unselfishly spending hours with a bereaved family.
Her self-sacrifice will always be remembered and cherished with feelings of grateful admiration and undying gratitude by all whom she befriended.
in 1902 , for her many good deeds, she was presented with an illuminated address signed by more than 80 residents and it was these deeds that , no doubt, led the officiating Minister at her graveside to liken Granny to Florence Nightingale.
For this important dedication it is expected that many residents of the Camden Haven district will converge on the Laurieton Cemetery to pay homage to this remarkable woman – GRANNY BELL.