I was born June 22, 1922, the second son of George Nobles and Genora Lucas, the first having died at birth and the name given to me. I have a brother and two sisters born about two years and some months apart. My brother died several years ago. I was born in Prince Edward County, Ameliasburgh township, Ontario, Canada. At five years old we moved to Belleville to what is known as the devil’s elbow. Later Dad built the house on Canifton Road. From there I started school at seven years old at the Prince of Wales school where I spent seven years and graduated. As times were hard and Dad had a paper salvage business, my brother and I went to work, first with my uncle on the horse and wagon gathering papers, bottles, rags and what we were able to sell to keep body and soul together. Then a condemned house was rented and baling presses built. My uncle pressed the papers into huge bales. We gathered the papers using push handcarts from stores we paid to save them for us. Push handcarts were popular in those days. Most people had them and were doing the same thing.
My father’s business was by far the biggest in Belleville at that time. Pretty soon we could not keep up. We were working from early in the morning to late at night with a lantern on the cart. We decided we needed a truck. My brother and I went to Belleville and both bought a Model T Ford. He paid four dollars and I paid five which is just about all the money we had as he was ten and I was twelve. Dad got them running for us and we learned to drive them in the pasture field at the back of the house. In a couple of days we felt brave enough to head into town to catch up on the collection. Drivers’ licences were never thought of. We drove until one day the police said you boys had better get a driver’s licence. By that time I was fifteen and my brother was thirteen. When questioned, I told the policeman I was sixteen. He asked my brother how old he was. He replied sixteen. The policeman asked, “Are you twins?” and he said, “No, we’re brothers.”
My first job (I believe I was about eight years old) was taking apart old house meters for Abraham Safe, the metal dealer, on Saturdays for which I received two cents a pound. I would make about fifty cents a day. My father worked in the yard breaking up car engines for a dollar a day and I thought, ‘What will I ever do with all that money.’
I worked at many other jobs during my lifetime and became boss on many of them. Working for the government was the longest job I had from which I retired. I started as a laborer and in fourteen years became boss or manager and at one time had one hundred and twenty men working for me and several contracts. I worked for thirty-two years and the pay was small but steady. I don’t think I ever did learn to be a writer but it did come naturally after so much paper work in my office. I am more of a story teller. I have built two houses and helped my son build one mortgage free, mostly paid with money from scrap metal and wheeling and dealing. I married my first wife, my pen pal, in 1948. She died at child birth in 1949 and was buried one day before our one year anniversary. I married again in 1951 to another pen pal and buried her July 12, 2000. She was a Church of Jesus Christ member and I joined it in 1954 hoping to be a member the rest of my life. I have traced my genealogy to the fifteenth century. The one illegal arrest in my life time was when the police said I didn’t yield, but I did. Because of that I had demerit marks and had to have a driver’s test which I passed. I have never had any trouble with neighours and try to get along with any one.
Next June I will be 86. I have learned much over the years plus what my father taught me - never trust man or beast or the likeness of either. Every time I do, I get stung. A man should listen to his Daddy.