Peter Little is gathering personal information on the
of the young men inscribed on the Comfort Monument
|Donald and Millard Noble were sons of William Frederick and Jean Watson Noble of 82 Stanley Street, Saint John. They were killed in World War I. Their names are on the plaques on the Comfort Monument in the Public Gardens in Saint John.|
Although we had plenty to eat at our home, it seemed to me that Mum often prepared the really good sweets for non-family members. She had been baking all morning and had made Honey Bars, Boston Drop Cookies, Raisin Squares and a Chocolate cake with boiled icing to take to the WMS meeting at Gram's house.
Since there was no school, I was going with her. My hopes were pinned on the other ladies bringing lots of cakes and cookis so I could have a really big lunch.
When we arrived, Mrs. Carson, with yard stick and card board patterns in hand, was drawing designs on the quilt. The ladies quickly pulled up chairs and leaned over the wooden frames and commenced to make tiny stitches along these lines.
As they worked, they spoke of the hardships that were being suffered by New Brunswick soldiers who were fighting in the Second World War. At there last meeting they had brought home knitted socks to be donated to the Red Cross to be sent overseas to the soldiers.
During the First World War, a group of ladies who lived in the area of Rockwood Park in Saint John gathered to form the Comfort Club. They tried to aid the neighbourhood boys as best they could when they enlisted and went overseas, by sending comforts to them.
When some of the boys were called upon to make the supreme sacrifice the group felt that the least they could do was to raise a monument to their bravery. The monument, made from a solid block of Spoon Island granite was erected on the eastern end of the Public Gardens where these young men had played as boys. When it was presented in 1921 by the Comfort Society to the Horticultural Association of Saint John, the president Sir Douglas Hazen assured them it would be a labor of love on the part of the association to care for the monument and keep it in good preservation. Bessie Myers and Gordon Nobles whose brothers names were inscribed on the tablet performed the act of unveiling.
The inscription was: "Erected by the Rockwood Comfort Club in memory of J. A. Myers, W. C. Smith, H. L. Boyer, L. C. Seeley, E. R. Arnold, D. McR. Noble and M. C. Noble, residents of this vicinity, who in the great war gave their lives for the cause of liberty and right."
Peter Little provided me with information on the boys whose names are on the plaque. Jesse Arthur Myers was the son of Jesse and Elizabeth Myers, 15 Spruce Street and was survived by 1 brother and 2 sisters; Harold Irvine Boyer, the son of Robert and Edith S. Boyer, 73 Stanley Street was survived by a brother Royden; Millard Caird Noble and Donald McRae Noble, the sons of William Frederick and Jean Watson Noble, 82 Stanley Street left behind brothers Charles, W. Alexander, Gordon and Stewart; Walter Calkin Smith, the son of Rufus R. and Esther R. Smith, 26 Seely Street was survived by brothers Percy G., H. Lester, Reid J. and sister Lucy; Edwin Roy Arnold, who lived with an uncle James O. McKay at 28 Wright Street was survived by a sister Jean; and Leslie Gilbert Seeley, the son of E.B. and Annie Josephine Seely, 38 Wright Street left 6 siblings to mourn their loss.
A second plaque was added to the monument in memory of the neighbourhood lads who died in World War II: James Edward Thomas, David Jamieson, David Malcolm Armstrong and Theodore Estabrooks Rising.
A third plaque gives the names of the boys from the Wiggins Orphanage who died in both of the great wars: Walter Allan, William Henderson, Thomas Rowley, Harold Linton, Frances Cosgrove, James Cosman, Avard Northrup, and Emile Wolfe.
Peter Little's desire is to put faces, family and personal information to the names of the young men inscribed on the Comfort Monument, who gave their all. In so doing, their sacrifice will not be forgotten.
If you have photos or any other information that you are willing to share,
you can write to him at 10 Grant Drive, Quispamsis, N.B., E2E 1B2. E-mail
PLITTLE@nbnet.nb.ca or telephone
Ruby is a genealogy buff. Readers are invited to send their New Brunswick genealogical queries to her at firstname.lastname@example.org. When E-Mailing please put Yesteryear Families in the Subject line. Please include in the query, your name and postal address as someone reading the newspaper, may have information to share with you but not have access to E-mail. Queries should be no more than 45 words in length.
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