Clan Bell Badge, Scottish Border Clan, Border Reivers
Clan Bell is a Border Reiver Scottish clan. The family Bell may well descend from a Norman follower of David I who reigned until 1153 and was, by the end of the thirteenth century, well established in Dumfriesshire, Berwickshire and Perthshire.
The Bells participated in the Borders disturbances as one of the riding clans of border reivers. In the thirteenth century Gilbert Le Fitzbel held lands in Dumfries, Sir David Bell was Clerk of the Wardrobe to Robert II. In 1426, William Bell's lands of Kirkconnel were confirmed by James I under a charter recorded in the register of the great seal.
The Bells, along with other Borders families, became increasingly turbulent throughout the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. The Bells were one of the thirteen clans considered "the Devil's Dozen" for their reiving activities. The Crown's determination to pacify the Borders led in 1517 to Clan Bell receiving royal letters of warning to keep the peace.
After the union of the Crowns in 1603, the family suffered much the same fate as the other border reivers; many emigrated to the new plantation lands in Ulster where the name is among the twenty most numerous in that province. Others settled further afield in Australia and New Zealand.
Each item begins as a piece of bronze sheet metal. After a pattern is transferred to the metal, the piece is etched in a salt-water solution. Each piece is hand cut, sanded, and polished. The pin back is soldered on. A patina has been applied giving the metal that aged look. A clear polymer coating is applied to the face of the badge.