The Noble Brothers, Sam and Ed, arrived in Ardmore, Chickasaw Nation, in 1893, from Oakland Prairie, Pickens County, after a brief sojourn in Pottsboro, Texas, where they were partners in a general merchandise business and operated a ferry crossing the Red River into Indian Territory.
The brothers married sisters Hattie and Eva Skinner, from their former home in western New York, and had made the land run when the Cherokee Outlet was opened for settlement. After staking claims but choosing not to prove up their homesteads, Sam and Ed turned their eyes toward the raw frontier village of Ardmore, a town of 2,000 residents and made it their last stop.
Their wholesale grocery store, a wooden structure on east Main Street near the railroad tracks was destroyed in the great fire of 1895, with a complete loss of property except for the company books which were rescued by Eva Noble, Ed's wife. Viewing the destruction, the brothers made a decision to abandon the wholesale grocery business and instead to become hardware merchants in space rented for this new venture east of the Santa Fe freight depot.
Five years later, the brothers had sufficient funds to build a brick structure for the Noble Brothers Hardware Store at this location. The new store measured 40 by 70 feet, then an addition of 25 by 90 feet was added to the busy
establishment. They stocked such popular equipment as Racine buggies, Studebaker and Moline wagons, John Deere and Eagle plows, wood stoves and Eagle plows, wood stoves and ranges.
Here in an atmosphere that reeked of leather and packing grease and masculine conversation, young Lloyd Noble, Sam's son and delivery boy for the store, listened to the farmers and ranchers of the area and became aware of the many problems associated with their economic struggles. After a spectacular career in the oil business - he created Noble Drilling Company and Samedan Oil Corporation among others 0 in 1945, he established the Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation, a charitable trust with the primary goal of addressing the needs of local farmers and ranchers.