Luther V Bell., M. D., LL. D., an American physician, son of Gov. Samuel Bell of New Hampshire, born at Chester, N. H., Dec. 20, 1806, died near Budd's Ferry, Md., Feb. 11, 1862. He entered Bowdoin college at the age of 12, and graduated in 1821, before he had completed his 15th year. He received his medical degree from the Hanover medical school while yet under 20, and commenced practice in New York, but returned to New Hampshire. One of his earlier operations, the amputation of the femur, was successfully performed, in default of any other accessible instruments, with the patient's razor, a tenor saw, and a darning needle for a tenaculum. He was chosen superintendent of the McLean insane asylum at Charlestown, Mass., entered upon his duties there in January, 1837, and continued to discharge them till 1856, when he resigned. In 1852 he was nominated as the whig candidate for congress, and received the highest vote; but there were three candidates, and a majority of the whole vote being required, a second trial was had, in which his opponents united upon one candidate, and he was defeated. In 1850 he was a member of the state council, and in 1853 of the convention for revising the state constitution.
In 1856 he was the whig candidate for governor, but was defeated by his "American" opponent. When the civil war broke out he went as surgeon to a regiment, and so remained until his death.