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Lily Bell Season 2 promo.jpg

Lily Bell
Date of birth: 1840
Birth place: England
Status: Deceased
Date of death: 1866
Occupation: Surveyor
Marital status: Widowed
Relatives: Rebecca Bell - mother-in-law
Charlotte Bell - sister-in-law
Emily Bell - sister-in-law
Relationships: Robert Bell - husband, deceased
Thomas Durant - former lover
Cullen Bohannon - lover
Behind the scenes
Portrayed by: Dominique McElligott
Seasons: 1, 2
First episode: "Pilot"
Last episode: "Blood Moon Rising"
Appearances: 20 episodes (see below)

Lily Bell was the widow of Union Pacific Railroad surveyor, Robert Bell. She carries the nickname "The Fair-Haired Maiden of the West" and later became a surveyor in her own right.


Background information[]

Lily was born in London, England and her father is rather controlling, having every moment of Lily's life planned since her birth. Lily upset this plan by marrying Robert Bell. Robert's family is also less than pleased at the match. She is not close to her former in-laws, having only met them once prior to her marriage to Robert. ("Revelations")

Season 1[]

Main article: Season 1

Lily shares her husband Robert Bell's work mapping a route from Nebraska to the Rockies and beyond. Though Robert wants her to return to Chicago once they reach hostile native territory, Lily insists on staying by his side after he became ill.

Early one morning, the surveying camp is attacked by Cheyenne warriors and Robert and Lily flee to the treeline. While hiding in the trees, Robert starts coughing, bringing the attention of one of the warriors, Sun Bear. During the ensuing struggle, Lily is struck in the shoulder and hand with an arrow and Robert is fatally stabbed. Tearing the arrow from her wounds, Lily attacks and kills Sun Bear, striking the arrow through the bottom of his chin. After watching Robert take his final breaths, Lily takes the maps and flees. ("Pilot")

Season 2[]

Main article: Season 2

Sometime after the Union Pacific Railroad reaches its forty-mile mark, Lily becomes far more aggressive in her dealings with the railroad. She admits that she nearly struck Dieter Schmidt when he refused to tell her the reason for delays in construction of the railroad. She also starts to wears trousers and a long coat, abandoning her cumbersome dresses for everyday work. Lily does not completely lose her compassion and shows concern after a prostitute Penny is killed in town, paying Thor Gundersen for a proper burial for the woman. ("Viva La Mexico") In the final episode of season two entitled "Blood Moon Rising" Lily is strangled to death in her train car by Thor Gundersen, better known as "The Swede", in an attempt to punish Bohannon.

Attributes and Personality[]

Lily, while a refined and well-dressed lady, is also headstrong, clever, and brave. She kills her Cheyenne attacker, dresses her own wounds in the wilderness, and preserves Robert Bell's maps. Lily is also known to be manipulative, intentionally and otherwise, especially with Thomas Durant. ("Pilot", "Immoral Mathematics")


Robert Bell[]

Main article: Robert Bell

Lily first met her future husband while he was lecturing at the British Natural History Museum on the American West. Their relationship was very strong up the very end, with Robert sacrificing his life to save Lily and Lily killing their attacker as he lay dying.

Thomas Durant[]

Main article: Thomas Durant

Durant seems to care more for Lily far more than she cares for him. While she enjoys the luxuries Durant provides her immediately following Robert's death, she balks at the idea of being a kept woman and moves out onto her own into Hell on Wheels. Durant accuses her of playing him "like a fiddle". Though their relationship becomes decidedly cooler, Lily still plays the part of "Fair-Haired Maiden of the West" for the benefit of Durant's investors, and by extension, Robert's dream.

Cullen Bohannon[]

Main article: Cullen Bohannon

Bohannon and Lily's relationship is very rocky, Bohannon even going as far as recalling later that he thought she was "just some spoiled, limey brat". She is impressed by Bohannon bravery when he rushes in to rescue workers from the black powder explosion but horrified when he beats Thor Gundersen. The two share several intimate moments, one while celebrating the completion of the first forty miles in the Starlight Saloon and the other after Bohannon tells her about his wife, Mary. Eventually they consummate their relationship. ("Jamais Je Ne T'oublierai", "Derailed", "Timshel", "God of Chaos")


Season 1 appearances
"Pilot" "Immoral Mathematics" "A New Birth of Freedom" "Jamais Je Ne T'oublierai" "Bread and Circuses"
"Pride, Pomp and Circumstance" "Revelations" "Derailed" "Timshel" "God of Chaos"
Season 2 appearances
"Viva La Mexico" "Durant, Nebraska" "Slaughterhouse" "Scabs" "The Railroad Job"
"Purged Away with Blood" "The White Spirit" "The Lord's Day" "Blood Moon" "Blood Moon Rising"