PETER HANSBOROUGH BELL was born in Culpeper, Virginia, where he attended public schools. He had been a merchant in Petersburg, Virginia for a number of years when he left to fight in the Texas Revolution. He served as Assistant Inspector General of the Texas Army from 1837 to 1839 and Inspector General from 1839 to 1840. He went on to become captain of a company of Texas Rangers and served as Lieutenant Colonel in the command of Zachary Taylor during the Mexican War. Like his gubernatorial predecessors, Bell was faced with the problem of Texas’s western land claims. He resigned from office to accept appointment to a vacancy in the U.S. House of Representatives, and went on to serve in Congress for four years. He retired to his wife’s plantation near Littleton, North Carolina, where he is buried. In 1930 Bell’s and his wife’s remains were moved to the State Cemetery in Austin, Texas.
Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 4. Westport, CT: Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.
The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography, Vol. 9. New York: James T. White & Company.