After this John and his family returned to Maitland where the third of seven children, Arthur, was born on 6th March 1859. On the birth certificate John was described as a "farmer". In the early days this wouldn't have brought him sufficient income to feed his ever growing family and perhaps this is why the Maitland Mercury reported in April 1859 that he had been awarded the tender to convey mail from Mount Vincent to East Maitland and back on horseback over a nine month period for a sum of £20 (in today's value this is about £1,800 using the retail price index).
Some, including me, might be surprised that Australia had the pound sterling. This was the case until 1910 when it became an Australian Pound and then in 1931 it became quite distinct from the British Pound after devaluation. On Valentine's Day 1966 it was replaced by the currency we now know, the Australian Dollar.
John remarried after Jane's death in 1872 to Margaret Sarah Patterson. On his marriage certificate he was described as a storekeeper living at Mount Vincent. They would go on to have 6 children together between 1873 and 1886. This gave John a total of 13 children with the oldest being 31 years old when the last baby was born.
Still living at Mount Vincent, in June 1881 John lost his treasured horse and a £1 reward was offered in the local paper for its recovery and delivery to "Mr Norman" (probably William).
Around 1891 John moved his family to the village of Aberglasslyn which is a suburb of Maitland. It looks from subsequent evidence that he probably started a farm there and became a full time farmer.
I speculated earlier whether John's disasters were all behind him ...... seemingly not !
It seems John's farm was built on an area where it was susceptible to flooding. I have found an article in 1893 explaining the setting up of a sub committee of local farmers as a result of a major flood in the area. John Noble and George Cobb were elected to represent the Aberglasslyn area. The flood of 1893 was said to be "memorable".
A further flood occurred five years later in 1898 and this was an extract from the article in the local newspaper :
The farmers about Rosebrook were very heavy sufferers – all of them being more or less flooded – losing large quantities of corn, pumpkins, potatoes etc. Mr Michael Doran’s farm was completely submerged, and he lost pretty well everything. The same may be said of those a little lower down in the vicinity of Aberglasslyn. The waters made a clean sweep through them. It then names the farmers effected including John Noble, P.O’Brion and George Cobb. It goes on to say we are assured that in some places the water was almost, if not quite, as high as in the memorable flood of 1893.
Recovery from these floods must have been difficult for a farmer who relied on his crops but John was certainly someone who always seemed to bounce back one way or another. However he was now over seventy years old and three years later .......
His second wife died at Kearsley Shire, Aberglasslyn aged 87 in August 1931 and the newspaper reported that she was the relict of the late John Noble, a well known and esteemed resident of the Aberglasslyn and Mount Vincent districts. It says she had resided in Aberglasslyn for over 40 years, previous to which she resided at Mount Vincent for 26 years.
John must have left the farm in trust for his wife during her lifetime as, after her death, an article (see left) appeared in the local paper saying that it had been sold to one of their son's, Alexander, at the princely sum of £50 per acre - the 43 acres would therefore have been sold for £2,150, which if you adjust this by the retail prices index would amount to somewhere in the region of £120,000 in today's terms.
For someone who had experienced bankruptcy, had been responsible for causing his mother in law's early death and who had been flooded out of his farm on more than one occasion, this was a lot more than his descendants might have expected ...... although there were 10 of his 13 children still alive so it wouldn't have gone too far !