Earle and Nora Moore
An Extraordinary Couple
Earle and Nora Moore, more accurately described as a unit rather than a couple, were an extraordinary duo in many ways. Everything they accomplished was done together, Earle’s reply to a to a request was always, “I will have to talk to Nora.”
While Earle’s ancestors were from the Milles Iles region, his parents lived in Outremont where Earle graduated from Strathcona High School.
Earle’s urge to travel began very early. In 1927, at the age of 20, he paid $10 to get a job on a cattle boat to work his way over to England. While he was not thrilled with the job, it got him to England. While he was in England he heard that Lindbergh had flown the Atlantic. He immediately got on a flight of a re-converted first world war bomber and flew to Paris. Once that far into the continent he decided he might as well go down to Venice before returning home.
Back home he went to work for the James Robertson Company before moving to his father’s company on Craig Street. Moore Brother Machinery had been started by his grandfather and inherited by his father and uncle.
The land where the company was situated was expropriated to build a section of the Trans Canada Highway. Moore Brothers relocated to Decarie Blvd. It was was now a $2 million importer and distributor of large machinery.
Addicted to joining clubs he seldom, if ever, refused an invitation. He was recognized as being an active member ready to serve whenever, however, he was needed. He was active in The Montreal Light Aeroplane Club when Billy Bishop was its president. He was a member and one time president of the Dominion Commercial Travellers Association, a member and past president of the Montreal Rotary Club, a member of the executive Board of Trade, an active member in the Royal Commonwealth Society, director of the English Speaking Union, and the Spoke Club, a 1930’s forum for public speaking. In debating he was recognized as a formidable opponent.In a debate with Eric Kearns on “The Value of Socialism”, Earle handily won the day. He was a member of the Masons, a director of the Heritage Society, director of the Quebec Museums Society, and Life Governor of the Chateau de Ramezay. He joined the Farm Club of Montreal, an organization of urban businessman who retained faint memories of rural life and still loved the soil. He had one time served as president of this club.
He ran as a Conservative in Mount Royal under George Drew, was elected alderman in the Town of Mount Royal and later Baie-d’Urfe.
His greatest interest was as in the Boy Scout Association of Canada where he served on the executive council and sometimes for International commissioner for the Boy Scouts of Canada. He represented the Canadian Boy Scout Association at the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II . He said it was one of his greatest pleasures to meet Mrs. Baden Powell, wife of the founder of the Boy Scout movement. He was especially involved in the establishment of Camp Jackson Dobbs. (The camp now abandoned, was located at Lac Cloutier, Quebec.)
Earle was a director of Quebec Heritage, and a member of the Antique Airplane Association. He served as a president of the Quebec Assocation of Museums
Nora’s ancestor, Robert Mason, came to Rawdon from Ireland about 1825. Nora’s grandfather, William Henry Mason, was a farmer at Sixth Range, Lot 14 of Rawdon Township. In the 1890s, he had placed a sign at his gate naming his farm Masonville. The name is still posted at the entrance to Masonville Morindale. The farmhouse stands along the main road in Masonville.
When her mother, Marguerite Mason Lehane, died Nora received a share of this property.
A graduate of fashion and design she was considered one of Canada’s top authorities on early Canadian dress and furniture.
Like her husband Nora was active in her community. She was a member of the Canadian Red Cross, the Montreal Rehabilitation Centre, and a founding member of the Ladies Auxiliary of the Eventide Salvation Army Home. She was a member and president of the Women’s Art Society of Montreal, the ladies branch of the Antiquarianism and Numismatic society, and honorary president of the Rawdon Artists Circle. She was an active member of the Royal Commonwealth Society, the English-speaking Union, and the Quebec Museums Society. Her greatest interest was in Canadiana Village which she and her husband founded. She remained an avid collector until illness restricted her activity.
In 1978 she was presented with the Citizens Award for Outstanding Service to the Community by the Rotary Club of Montreal. With her husband she was awarded the Governor General’s Medal for work in the promotion and preservation of Canadian heritage.
So now, you ask, what has this to do with Rawdon? In truth, very much.
Their enthusiasm in preserving early pieces expanded to collecting old buildings. The moving of these buildings provided much needed employment. Starting with one or two men, as the project expanded there were 50 employees on the payroll at Canadiana Village. Many more people were needed when special activities, such as filming were on the site.