Petrus was the fifth child born in the family
of Pieter Joannes and Carolina Van Den Bossche. He married on
the last day of August 1859. His bride was Rosalie Pauwels who
was born in Oostwinkel on 17
September 1830. At the end of January 1860 the couple came to live
in Eeklo, Raverschoot, 65 Bis.
A week after the birth of Rosalie Revolution broke out and
Belgium won its independence
when volunteers from all over the country defeated the Dutch armies.
But since 1815, when Napoleon was thrown out of Europe, our regions
were excluded from the French markets. And now the sulking Dutch
also refused to allow the sale of the products of our people in their
country. By the time Petrus and Rosalie came to live in Eeklo the
crisis years were more or less over. Little by little our country
regained the upper hand. Now Eeklo
also tried to surmount its formidable problems. The textile industry
was now concentrated in factories. The markets revived and education
The Church also revived: there were many more priests, monks and
One of the many Flemish missionaries was Joseph De Veuster (1840 - 1889)
who as Father Damien devoted his life to the Hawaiian lepers.
The year 1891 saw the publication of the papal encyclical "Rerum
Novarum" in which the Pope set out the Catholic position on social
justice especially in relation to the problems arisen with the Industrial
Petrus Noë was a contemporary of i.a. the Flemish priest and poet
Guido Gezelle (1830 - 1899) and the Flemish writer Hendrik Conscience
(1812-1883) who, it was said "taught his people to read" when
Flemish was considered too vulgar to be a literary medium.
And then there were the composers Giuseppe Verdi (1813 - 1901), Johannes
Brahms (1833 - 1897), Johann Strauss (1825 - 1899) and Piotr Ilitch
Tchaikovsky (1840 - 1893); the painter Vincent Van Gogh (1853 - 1890).
But there was also Karl Marx (1818 - 1893) whose nefarious influence is
recognized by many.
The number of agricultural exploitations in Belgium increased from
573,00 in 1846 to 830,000 in 1890. The great majority of these were
tiny operations of only a few hundred square yards where moonlighting
factory workers grew vegetables most for their own consumption.
Cereal crops and potatoes were the most important crops.
But cattle-raising also increased.
Chemical fertilizers first appeared around 1850.
Now that the industrial businesses fared a little better many people fled
the countryside and chose for higher wages in the factories.
In the Civil Registry of 1866 Petrus is listed as living in the Peperstraat,
19 (Pepper Street). He and his wife were illiterate. And they
definitely were not the only ones. In 1866 Eeklo had 5895 illiterate
people out of a population of 9544. Perhaps these figures are misleading
because quite possibly the babies were counted among the illiterates. It
is perhaps more interesting to know that in 1862-63 only 241 candidate soldiers
from Eeklo out of 491 had received "tuition"
("onderwijs"). No doubt a lot of those 241 could barely write
their name. ("De Familie De Crop", C. De Crop, in "De Eik",
1984, p. 110)
Petrus and Rosalie returned to Adegem
on 3/5/1879 but only for a short while.
because on 10 June 1880 we find them at Busch 26. He was a cowherd
there. At the end of the century he had a small farm in the
Balgerhoekstraat, now at Pastoor Bontestraat, 96 in
Petrus died in Balgerhoeke on 19
January 1900. When Rosalie became infirm she
moved in with her son Eduard. And she was with them when Eduard and his
whole family fled to Kaprijke during WW I.
In May 1921 elections were held and for the first time in Belgium women were
allowed to vote. So, Rosalien in her 90s, wanted to go to Eeklo and
vote. There were very few cars, so a truck was found to take the senior
citizens together to the voting booth in Eeklo. The road was undoubtedly
not quite as smooth as it is today; the "passenger" part of the truck
was surely not heated. Perhaps that trip didn't do her a lot of good
because 14 days later, on 25 May 1921, she died of bronchitis.
The 7 children of Petrus and Rosalie:
° Eeklo 30/6/1860
He left for the U.S.A. and since then we are without news from him.
° Eeklo 2/3/1862
He didn't marry. He worked for a few years on the farm of Mrs Slock, a widow in
the Peperstraat (Pepperstreet) in Eeklo. Later he farmed on the parental
farm in the Balgerhoekstraat. In May 1940 he came to live in one of the
small terraced houses in the Brugsesteenweg where he died on 31/3/1948.
The word "steenweg" means paved road. The Brugsesteenweg is the
paved road to Bruges, or a part of it because near Bruges that same road is
perhaps called "Eeklosesteenweg", paved road to Eeklo. These
roads were originally paved with cobble stones, sometimes also called
mother-in-law's heads ("têtes de belle-mère"). Travelling on
them on those horse-drawn wooden carts might occasionally shake everything about
a little bit but it was nevertheless quite often easier going than through
the mud tracks of unpaved roads.
Pieter Bernard Noë
° Eeklo 29/6/1864
† Eeklo 11/8/1864
° Eeklo 18/9/1865
She got married in Lembeke to Victor
Joseph Cauwels, carpenter. He was born there on 4-3-1861.
Both also died there, she on 12-12-1929 and he on 5-5-1940.
° Eeklo 18/1/1868
She worked first at home as embroiderer ("borduurster op (on) neteldoek").
"Neteldoek" (litterally translated: nettlecloth) was originally a
tissue made of thread or yarn which itself was made from the tissues of certain
kinds of nettles. Apparently they made dresses with this nettlecloth. On
18/11/1891 in Eeklo she married Eduard De Poorter, who was born in
Zomergem on 23/6/1858. He was the
son of Jan Baptiste De Poorter and Marie Fernande Van Steenkiste.
Eduard was a flaxdresser. For those not familiar with this specialized
work, now entirely mechanized, the flaxdresser beat the flax with wooden cutters
to remove wood like particles from the flax fibre.
After the death of Eduard on 16/11/1894 she remarried in Eeklo on 26/12/1895
with August De Vriendt, the son of Joannes Leonardus and Sophie Engels.
Marie-Louise died in the Balgerhoekstraat, 29 on 20/3/1949 aged 81. August died
less than a year later, on 7/2/1950.
° Eeklo 18/8/1872
She never married and lived with her unmarried brother August on the parental
farm. In May 1940 both took up residence in the Brugsesteenweg and a few
years after his death she was put up in the old peoples home in the King
Albertstreet where she died on 10/6/1968 aged 95.
° Eeklo 18/2/1875
He married in Eeklo on 7/7/1906 with Prudence De Brabandere who was born there on
18/4/1869 and who already had a daughter by her first husband, Charles Van Eenaeme,
who had been killed by a horse.
When Prudence died of cancer in Eeklo on 29/1/1917, her eldest daughter
Marie-Louise Van Eenaeme promised not to marry to look after little Elza, her
half-sister. Eduard urged her not to make such a sacrifice and they
eventually promised both or neither would marry.
And so on 19 April 1922 in the church of
Balgerhoeke, during the same Holy Mass,
Marie-Louise Van Eenaeme marries Jules Van Vooren and Eduard Noë marries Marie Louise
Jules Van Vooren, a lumberjack, was born in
Adegem on 20/8/1887, the son of Seraphinus and
Seraphina Nooteboom. Marie Louise De Metsenaere, a seamstress, was born in Adegem
on 28/11/1871, the daughter of Leopold and Eugénie De Volder.
Eduard was a railway worker in Balgerhoeke. He lived first in the
Balgerhoekstraat and after his second marriage in the Brugsesteenweg in Adegem
where he died on 5/12/1947. His first wife and after her death his
stepdaughter also worked on the railways: they were responsible for a
swing-gate at a level crossing.
Marie-Louise died in Balgerhoeke on
Christmas Day 1965 at the age of 94.
Jules moved in with his daughter in Balgerhoeke. He was 101 years old when he died
suddenly on 8/1/1989. Eduard and Prudence had 3 children:
born in Eeklo on 1/2/1908.
She married Philibert Van Landschoot.
Gerard August Noë
° Eeklo 17/4/1909
† Eeklo 2/11/1909