The Nobles are from Scotland and England.
Nathan and Virginia (Neace) Noble are claimed by some to be the among the first settlers
to settle in the Troublesome Creek area of Eastern Kentucky.
They came over the mountains from Virginia.
At that time Kentucky was a part of Western Virginia.

Nathan Noble/The Man - Written By Barb Graham

The name Nathan Noble has become very familiar to all of us in our research. I would like to look beyond the name and see if we can find the man who was ancestor to us all. The first thing we know of him he led a large party out of Virginia through the rugged, dangerous mountains of southeastern Kentucky to settle in what we now know as Breathitt and Perry Counties.

This would have been a rather large party to have been traveling through the mountains on foot and horseback .We have found written records that Nathan's brothers and sisters, and also the brothers of his wife Virginia Neace were in the group. Jeremiah Noble, grandson of Nathan and Virginia in an interview with Rev. John J. Dickey, which is now part of The Dickey Diaries Collection, talks of Nathan, Enoch and William, he also mentions brothers of Virginia, Jacob, Austin and Henry Neace.

Jeremiah also names four Fugate brothers, Jonathan, Eli, Levi and Zachariah, he says they "came about the same time", so we don't know if they were actually part of the Noble group.

Also in an interview done in 1939, written by Margaret F. Bishop, who was doing a history of Breathitt Co., Granville Pearl Noble, son of Henry Noble and grandson of Nathan and Virginia gives us more information. He names another brother to Nathan, John Noble, who traveled on to Alabama from Kentucky. Granville tells us Nathan and his party brought with them, mules, horses, guns and dogs.

If anyone has not read this interview with Granville Pearl Noble, you should definitely do so. At the time of the interview he was 92 yrs old and gives us a wonderful picture of how the families lived during his early life (pre and post civil war).

We have not found any information to indicate the party of travelers met with any disasters. The journey, although probably quite difficult was made safely.

From this first record we can see Nathan Noble our ancestor as a strong leader, dependable, resourceful and determined.

Next we find Nathan and William on the 1811 Tax list for Clay Co Ky., (Breathitt Co. was formed in 1839 from parts of Clay, Estill and Perry Co's). So we now know our Nathan was a very hard working man to have acquired land by 1811, also a law abiding citizen who paid his taxes.

Our next written record of Nathan comes from the Perry County Court Order, Book A, the June term of 1822. Here we find Nathan Noble, along with John Haddix and Henley Haddix, appointed by the court to lay out a roadway. The page is torn so we cannot get the information on where the roadway was. We see Nathan Noble here as a valuable, trusted member of the community being entrusted by the court with civic duties.

The next written record of Nathan also comes from the Rev. John J. Dickey Diaries part 3, Rev. Dickey writes of a Rev, Carlisle Babbitt, a circuit rider who once reproved Nathan for cooking on Sunday. On the reverend's next visit, Nathan served him cold bread. Rev. Babbitt asked for some of the warm bread Nathan had cooked for himself but he did not get it. Here we see in Nathan a man who believes in God, unselfish (feeding the travelers) and in the cold bread I see a great wit and sense of humor.

We can trace Nathan and his family on census records, 1830 Clay Co Ky., 1840 Breathitt Co K., 1850, Breathitt Co Ky., to his death in 1858. These records show Nathan and Virginia with many children and grandchildren and most of them stayed in a very close area for many years. This shows Nathan to be a family man, someone his children and grandchildren wanted to be close to, admired and respected.

We have looked at all the factual knowledge we have of Nathan Noble so let's add it all up and see what we have. Here are the words that came to mind and were used in describing him, strong leader, dependable, resourceful, determined, hard working, law-abiding, valuable, trusted, believer in God, unselfish, great wit, sense of humor, family man, admired, respected.

What a wonderful person our Nathan Noble must have been. Wouldn't you love to have known him!

NATHAN NOBLE/THE MAN Written By Barb Graham Sept.11, 2005 Reprinted with permission.